The recommended goal for the treatment of major depressive disorder is remission (i.e., minimal to no remaining symptoms). First-step treatments fall short of remission approximately two-thirds of the time, resulting in adverse consequences for the patient. Targeted treatments should be considered when available for specific symptoms of depression, treatment emergent symptoms and residual symptoms that do not improve during the initial treatment protocol to increase the likelihood of remission. The use of measurement-based care can help differentiate which type of symptom is present and can allow for the use of targeted treatments earlier in the treatment plan, which increases the likelihood of remission. Further research is needed to identify treatment predictors that will aid clinicians in the selection of the best treatment(s) for any given patient.
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