Depression - Causes and Symptoms

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Robert Maurer
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Depression is a state of mind characterized by psychic, behavioral and physical symptoms. The disorder, in particular, manifests itself with persistent sad mood, psychomotor slowdown, decreased interest or pleasure in activities, somatic and organic signs (asthenia, headache, weight loss, insomnia, loss of appetite, absence of sexual desire, etc. ).


Usually, a very low mood coexists with low self-esteem, difficulty concentrating and memory, ease of crying and a tendency to isolation. The onset of depression contributes to changes in neurotransmitter levels (including dysregulation of cholinergic, catecholaminergic and serotonergic transmission), alterations in neuroendocrine function, psychosocial factors (existential stresses) and hereditary components. Depression is found in psychiatric disorders (dysphoria, major depression or unipolar disorder, anxiety disorders and panic attacks, bipolar disorders and dysthymia) and can represent the response to negative existential events (grief, disappointment, loss, detachment, bereavement, etc. .). In other cases, it is secondary to various physical, neurological and organic diseases, including: epilepsy, encephalopathy, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, tumors, stroke, AIDS, Cushing's disease, Wilson's disease, systemic lupus erythematosus, chronic fatigue syndrome and multiple sclerosis.


depressive symptoms they also accompany degenerative neurological disorders (dementia, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's disease and Huntington's disease), diseases of the endocrine system (hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, hyperparathyroidism and testosterone deficiency), anemia, metabolic dysfunctions (hypoglycemia, hypomagnesaemia, vitamin D deficiency, pellagra and hypocholesterolemia), digestive system disorders (colitis, Crohn's disease, malabsorption diseases, celiac disease, cysticercosis and malnutrition) and heart disease (heart failure and myocardial infarction).


Long-term use of certain drugs (e.g. corticosteroids, β-blockers, interferon and reserpine) and / or substances (alcohol, amphetamine withdrawal, etc.) can also induce depressive symptoms.

Depression can also appear after childbirth and due to chronic stress in the workplace (eg bullying or "burnout" syndrome). In elderly people, this manifestation often derives from the deterioration of the general conditions and situations of marginalization.

In seasonal affective disorder (SAD), depressive symptoms appear in a seasonal pattern, typically during the fall or winter.

Possible Causes * of Depression

  • Alcoholism
  • Respiratory allergies
  • Nervous anorexia
  • Panic attack
  • Babesiosi
  • Brucellosis
  • Bulimia
  • Cysticercosis
  • cryptococcosis
  • Vascular dementia
  • Major Depression
  • Postpartum Depression
  • dysthymia
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Cyclothymic disorder
  • Uncontrolled feeding disorder
  • Borderline Personality Disorder
  • Avoidant Personality Disorder
  • Narcissistic Personality Disorder
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever
  • Adrenal insufficiency
  • Food intolerance
  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • Male hypogonadism
  • Hypoparathyroidism
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus
  • Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease
  • Huntington's disease
  • Peyronie's disease
  • Wilson's disease
  • Menopause
  • Mielofibrosi
  • Addison's disease
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Morbo of Cushing
  • Hashimoto's disease
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Narcolessia
  • Obesity
  • pellagra
  • Psychogenic polydipsia
  • Porphyria
  • Korsakoff's psychosis
  • Anger
  • Allergic rhinitis
  • Schizophrenia
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Scurvy
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Syndrome (ADHD)
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Down syndrome
  • Prader-Willi syndrome
  • Tourette's syndrome
  • Feto-alcoholic syndrome
  • Fibromyalgic syndrome
  • Premenstrual syndrome
  • Serotonergic syndrome
  • Pituitary tumors

* The symptom - Depression - is typical of diseases, conditions and disorders highlighted in bold. By clicking on the pathology of your interest you can read more information on its origins and on the symptoms that characterize it. Depression can also be a typical symptom of other diseases, not included in our database and therefore not listed.



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