, Volume 26, Issue 6, p 567

From the Editors’ Desk: Challenging Problems, Challenging Patients

This is an excerpt from the content

According to the World Health Organization, depression affects more than 120 million persons worldwide and is a significant cause of disability. In fact, as assessed by disability adjusted life years (or DALYs), depression now ranks 2nd for men and women in the 15–44 age group. Along with other mental and behavioral disorders, it is also one of the most common problems seen in primary care, and is a frequent accompaniment to many chronic illnesses.

In this issue of JGIM, several papers examine depression and other mental/behavioral health disorders from a variety of perspectives. Sorkin et al. report on a study of the mental health needs and barriers to care among older Asian Americans in the US. They found that while expression of emotional distress and utilization of mental health services varied among the six Asian subgroups studied, several groups continue to underutilize care, possibly because of stigma and other cultural barriers. This study reminds us that our patients continue t