Depression is very common in old age. Because it is associated with many issues related to aging such as having diabetes, hypertension, and other diseases and also the general ability to do less than when a person was younger, it is often assumed that depression is just part of the aging process. Inadequate treatment is often given for depression, frustrating patients and clinicians. However, aggressive depression treatment in elderly individuals can be very successful and greatly improve an older person’s quality of life.
Whole-genome sequencing is now easily done for very little cost. It is not known how to interpret the results of this testing. It is inadvisable for healthy individuals to undergo routine whole-genome sequencing but if someone has a reason to suspect a particular disease known to be associated with a unique gene, then targeted genetic sequencing is reasonable.
Interviewee: James P. Evans, MD, PhD, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.