Last reviewed: November 2017
Last updated: November  2017

Summary

Definition

History and exam

Key diagnostic factors

  • ≥2-year period of seasonally related changes in mood
  • fall or winter depression
  • spring or summer symptom remission
  • spring or summer manic or hypomanic symptoms
  • spring or summer depression
  • atypical depressive symptoms
  • vegetative depressive symptoms
  • manic/hypomanic symptoms

Other diagnostic factors

  • somatic symptoms
  • behavioral withdrawal
  • functional impairments
  • excessive alcohol use
  • tachycardia
  • increased systolic BP
  • restlessness

Risk factors

  • exposure to diminished light during winter and increased light during summer
  • residing at a northern latitude
  • FHx of SAD
  • female gender
  • age 20 to 30 years
  • psychological factors (e.g., high neuroticism)
  • psychiatric comorbidity (e.g., anxiety, ADHD, premenstrual dysphoric disorders)
  • alcohol use

Diagnostic investigations

Investigations to consider

  • blood metabolic panel
  • serum TSH
  • toxicology screen (urine and blood)
Full details

Treatment algorithm

Contributors

Authors VIEW ALL

Craig N. Sawchuk

Associate Professor

Co-Chair, Division of Integrated Behavioral Health

Department of Psychiatry and Psychology

Mayo Clinic

Rochester

MN

Disclosures

CNS declares that he has no competing interests.

Jason P. Veitengruber

Assistant Professor

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

University of Washington School of Medicine

Seattle

WA

Disclosures

JPV declares that he has no competing interests.

Clinical Instructor

Department of Psychiatry and Psychology

Mayo Clinic

Rochester

MN

Disclosures

WBL declares that he has no competing interests.

Peer reviewers VIEW ALL

Director of Assessment

Office of Curriculum and Assessment

University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry

Rochester

NY

Disclosures

SL declares that he has no competing interests.

Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy

Medical University of Vienna

Vienna

Austria

Disclosures

DW is an author of a number of references cited in this monograph. DW declares that he has no competing interests.

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