Mayo Clinic Depression Center offers innovative, integrated care

The World Health Organization estimates that depression will be the world's second most common health problem by 2020. To meet the growing need for effective care, Mayo Clinic Depression Center, under the direction of Mark A. Frye, M.D., offers four innovative, evidence-based programs for people with bipolar disorder or major depression:

  • The Mood Clinic provides comprehensive outpatient assessment for adults with depressive symptoms.
  • A 16-bed inpatient unit serves people whose depression significantly affects their safety, functioning or quality of life. More than 600 patients a year receive intensive individualized treatment, which may include cognitive behavioral therapy, medications, and family or group therapy.
  • A 10-day, outpatient, group psychotherapy program helps patients manage interpersonal issues using interpersonal social rhythm therapy, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy and behavioral activation.
  • A comprehensive consultation service addresses issues specifically related to mood disorders in women, especially initiation and maintenance of pharmacologic therapy during and after pregnancy.

Each Depression Center program is comprehensive and highly individualized. "Medicine doesn't get more personalized than this," says William V. Bobo, M.D., a psychiatrist specializing in the evaluation and treatment of depression at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. "For one thing, we have the luxury of time. Because we have much longer appointment times than most, patients can tell their whole story and we have a chance to ascertain as many relevant factors as possible."

The Depression Center is also fully integrated with Mayo Clinic, allowing for the simultaneous evaluation and treatment of mental health and co-occurring medical disorders. "If a Depression Center patient needs to see a cardiologist, for example, we coordinate the entirety of care, and the efficiency with which that is accomplished is stunning," Dr. Bobo says.

He adds, "Patient care is our foremost mission, but as an integrated practice, we are also committed to research. Our investigations span the translational spectrum from basic bench science work to population health studies and include epigenetic, pharmacogenetic and brain-imaging studies as well as clinical trials."

For instance, Mayo researchers recently reported in the Journal of Psychopharmacology that low-dose intravenous ketamine can rapidly reduce depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation. Dr. Frye, senior study author, says outstanding clinicians and investigators, such as Dr. Bobo, Osama A. Abulseoud, M.D., Susannah J. Tye, Ph.D., and Marin Veldic, M.D., enable the Depression Center to combine the highest quality patient care with clinically relevant research and education.

For more information

Rassmussen KG, et al. Serial infusions of low-dose ketamine for major depression. Journal of Psychopharmacology. 2013;27:444.