Main AHCA Website

AHCA’s main website for information on Medicaid, Health Quality Assurance and the Florida Center for Health Information and Transparency.

Go >

Florida Health Information Network

This website provides information and resources relating to AHCA’s initiatives for Health Information Technology and Health Information Exchange.

Go >


FloridaHealthFinder.gov

Provides health education and information to compare and locate health care providers in Florida to make well-informed health care decisions.

Go >
AHCA Network of Websites

Health Education


Health Encyclopedia

Search the Health Encyclopedia

Major depression with psychotic features

Definition

Major depression with psychotic features is a mental disorder in which a person has depression along with loss of touch with reality (psychosis).

Alternative Names

Psychotic depression; Delusional depression

Causes

The cause is unknown. A family or personal history of depression or psychotic illness makes you more likely to develop this condition.

Symptoms

People with psychotic depression have symptoms of depression and psychosis.

Psychosis is a loss of contact with reality. It usually includes:

  • Delusions: False beliefs about what is taking place or who one is
  • Hallucinations: Seeing or hearing things that aren't there

The types of delusions and hallucinations are often related to your depressed feelings. For example, some patients may hear voices criticizing them, or telling them that they don't deserve to live. The person may develop false beliefs about their body, for example, that they have cancer.

Exams and Tests

Your health care provider will perform a physical exam and ask questions about your medical history and symptoms. Your answers and certain questionnaires can help your health care provider diagnose this condition and determine how severe it may be.

Blood and urine tests and possibly a brain scan may be done to rule out other medical conditions with similar symptoms.

Treatment

Psychotic depression requires immediate medical care and treatment.

Treatment usually involves antidepressant and antipsychotic medicine. You may only need antipsychotic medicine for a short period of time.

Electroconvulsive therapy can help treat depression with psychotic symptoms. However, medicine is usually tried first.

Outlook (Prognosis)

This is a serious condition. You will need immediate treatment and close monitoring by a health care provider.

You may need to take medicine for a long time to prevent the depression from coming back. Depression symptoms are more likely to return than psychotic symptoms.

Possible Complications

The risk of suicide is much higher in people with depression with psychotic symptoms than in those without psychosis. You may need to stay in the hospital if you have thoughts of suicide. The safety of other people must also be considered.

When to Contact a Medical Professional

If you have thoughts of suicide or harming yourself or others, immediately call your local emergency number (such as 911) or go to the hospital emergency room.

You may also call a suicide hotline from anywhere in the United States, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week: 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-999-9999.

Call your health care provider right away if:

  • You hear voices that are not there.
  • You have frequent crying spells with little or no reason.
  • Your depression is disrupting work, school, or family life.
  • You think that your current medicines are not working or are causing side effects. Never change or stop any medicines without first talking to your provider.

References

American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. 5th ed. Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Publishing. 2013.

American Psychiatric Association. Practice Guideline for the Treatment of Patients with Major Depressive Disorder. 3rd edition. October 2010. Available at: http://psychiatryonline.org/pb/assets/raw/sitewide/practice_guidelines/guidelines/mdd.pdf Accessed: March 10, 2014.

Review Date:12/12/2014
Reviewed By:Paul Ballas, DO, Attending Psychiatrist, Friends Hospital, Philadelphia, PA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997-A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

adam.com

The Agency for Health Care Administration (Agency) and this website do not claim the information on, or referred to by, this site is error free. This site may include links to websites of other government agencies or private groups. Our Agency and this website do not control such sites and are not responsible for their content. Reference to or links to any other group, product, service, or information does not mean our Agency or this website approves of that group, product, service, or information.

Additionally, while health information provided through this website may be a valuable resource for the public, it is not designed to offer medical advice. Talk with your doctor about medical care questions you may have.

Health
Outcome Data

No data available for this condition/procedure.

Health Encyclopedia

More Features

We Appreciate Your Feedback
1. Did you find this information useful?
         Yes
         No

2. Would you recommend this website to family and friends?
         Yes
         No