Use of Anti-Depressants for Individuals without a DSM-IV Diagnosis

Zara Mogilevsky

Use of Anti-Depressants for Individuals without a DSM-IV Diagnosis
Mogilevsky, Zara
Thesis Advisor(s):
Son, Lisa K.
Undergraduate theses
Psychology (Barnard College)
Persistent URL:
B.A., Barnard College.
The current study aimed to examine the effects of Prozac (Fluoxetine) on individuals who displayed mild symptoms of mental illness- but did not qualify for a DSM-IV diagnosis. The effects of the medication were measured through responses to several questionnaires over six months concerning mood, productivity, and anxiety. The results indicated that Prozac helped to ease the suffering of those individuals who had mild symptoms of mental illness. Individuals in this group showed a great improvement in mood and productivity and a lessening in their daily anxiety when compared to the control group. Healthy individuals who did not display mild symptoms of mental illness did not show improvement in anxiety, mood or productivity after taking Prozac for six months. These findings are congruent with the descriptions presented by Peter Kramer in Listening to Prozac. This study has significant implications for the field of Neuro-Ethics and enhancement. More specifically, if individuals who are suffering can be helped through the administration of medications then serious considerations must be made by health care professionals. Medicine aims to heal, and it is not the job of the psychiatrist to judge the amount of suffering felt by the patient. Rather, if psychiatrist encounter patients who do not qualify for a DSM-IV diagnosis, yet still have mild symptoms of mental illness then anti-depressants such as Prozac should be administered to them.
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Suggested Citation:
Zara Mogilevsky, , Use of Anti-Depressants for Individuals without a DSM-IV Diagnosis, Columbia University Academic Commons, .

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