Dysthymia in neurological disorders

H. S. Akiskal, C. L. Bolis, C. Cazzullo, J. A. Costa E Silva, V. Gentil, Y. Lecrubier, Julio Licinio, M. Linden, J. J. Lopez-Ibor, I. P. Ndiaye, L. Pani, L. Prilipko, M. M. Robertson, R. G. Robinson, S. E. Starkstein, P. Thomas, Y. Wang, Ma-Li Wong

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13 Citations (Scopus)


Dysthymia is characterized by long-lasting periods of lowered mood. Epidemiological studies in the USA and Europe have demonstrated that the prevalence of dysthymia is at least 3% of the general population. Its pervasive occurrence makes dysthymia a public health problem worldwide. One feature of this disorder is its co-occurrence with medical and neurological disorders. A World Health Organization meeting on dysthymia in neurological disorders was held in Geneva, 1-3 July 1996 to address this topic. Some of the major goals of this meeting were to clarify the definition of dysthymia in the presence of neurological disorders and to evaluate current research in the field, to point out new areas for investigation, and to discuss current psychological and pharmacological treatments for dysthymia in neurological disorders. The potential roles of neuroendocrine and molecular mechanisms in dysthymia were identified through specific problems related to dysthymia occurring in disorders such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, stroke, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. This meeting provided direction and opportunity for future studies in the under-recognized and under-investigated relationship between dysthymia and neurological disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)478-491
Number of pages14
JournalMolecular psychiatry
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 1996


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Classification
  • Corticotropin-releasing hormone
  • Dopamine
  • Dysthymia
  • Epilepsy
  • Imaging techniques
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Nervous system diseases
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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