Conduct Disorder and Major Depressive Disorder Assessment

4 April 2015

A diagnosis of conduct disorder and major depressive disorder and how it effects adolescents of different cultures.

This paper examines the diagnosis made for adolescents who experience conduct disorder and major depressive disorder . The author examines how these two disorders effect adolescents and the differences between the above diagnosis for adults and children. In addition the author looks at the trend for African-American youth to be teacher-reported for externalized symptoms more than Euro-American youth and the risk of substance abuse that youth who suffer from co-morbid conduct disorder and depression face.”Distinguishing between conduct disorder and major depressive disorder in the assessment of adolescent patients has proved to be a difficult task for clinicians (Meller & Borchardt, 1996; Herkov & Myers, 1996).

While current literature has found that the two diagnoses are often comorbid, it appears that major depressive disorder may be under diagnosed, in part because the symptoms of conduct disorder tend to veil the symptoms of depression (Herkov & Myers, 1996; Swearer, 1998; Reinecke, 1995).

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There is evidence that adolescents express disorders differently than adults, and that “acting out” behaviors that are associated with conduct disorder may be a way for adolescents to express their depressive feelings (Reinecke, 1995). This under diagnosis of depression in adolescents is a serious problem because of the potential for improper treatment for the patient (Herkov & Myers, 1996). Therefore, it is of the utmost importance that clinicians are aware of the difficulties in discriminating between the two disorders.”

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