As the largest research study of depression treatments, STAR*D provides objective data for making treatment decisions and assessing patient outcomes.
The findings from the second of STAR*D's four phases demonstrate that individuals whose depression resists initial treatment still can achieve remission when their medication regimen either is augmented or changed.
STAR*D highlights the importance of measuring depressive symptoms, tailoring treatment to individual patients' needs, and selecting medications from a range of proven medications at therapeutic dosages.
STAR*D also addresses one of the fundamental reasons for the disparity in insurance coverage: the lack of understanding that behavioral disorders are illnesses that can be effectively treated.
STAR*D should encourage insurers to reassess that assumption.
Parity would help put STAR*D's lessons closer within our reach.
Phase II of STAR*D provides strong scientific support that treatment for depression works and that each medication studied works differently in each individual.