A new US-UK diagnostic project: mood elevation and depression in first-year undergraduates at Oxford and Stanford universities.
Chandler RA., Wang PW., Ketter TA., Goodwin GM.
OBJECTIVE: To investigate differences in prevalence of mood elevation, distress and depression among first-year undergraduates at Oxford and Stanford universities. METHOD: An online survey was sent to Oxford and Stanford first-year undergraduate students for two consecutive years in the winter of 2005 and 2006. Students completed a survey that assessed mood symptoms and medication use. RESULTS: Both universities had similar rates of distress by General Health Questionnaire (Oxford - 42.4%; Stanford - 38.3%), depression by Primary Care Evaluation of Mental Disorders (Oxford - 6.2%; Stanford - 6.6%), and psychotropic and non-psychotropic medication usage (psychotropic: Oxford - 1.5%; Stanford 3.5%; nonpsychotropic: Oxford - 13.3%; Stanford - 18%). Oxford had higher rates of mood elevation by Mood Disorder Questionnaire (MDQ) (Oxford - 4%; Stanford - 1.7%). CONCLUSION: Oxford and Stanford students have similar rates of mood distress, depression and general medication usage. Students at Oxford have a higher prevalence of MDQ scores that possibly indicate a bipolar disorder, while Stanford students are prescribed more psychotropics.