News Headlines Article

Silence Is the Enemy for Doctors Who Have Depression
The New York Times

In my first year of training as a doctor, I knew something was wrong with me. I had trouble sleeping. I had difficulty feeling joy. I was prone to crying at inopportune times. Even worse, I had trouble connecting with patients. I felt as if I couldn’t please anyone, and I felt susceptible to feelings of despair and panic.

I’m a physician, and, if I do say so myself, a very well-trained one. Yet it took an “intern support group” and the social worker who ran it, close friends and my fiancée (now my wife) to convince me that I might need help. Even if I couldn’t acknowledge it, they could see I was suffering from depression.

I wasn’t alone.

Last month, a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association reviewed all of the literature on depression and depressive symptoms in resident physicians — those are doctors still being trained. They found more than 50 studies on the subject. Research shows that almost 30 percent of resident physicians have either symptoms or a diagnosis of depression.