Depression due to an underlying medical condition

Mood disorders can occur due to underlying medical conditions. To diagnose a mood disorder due to an underlying medical condition: the mood disorder has to have started after the onset of the medical condition and there needs to be evidence that the symptoms of the mood disorder are due to the medical condition – e.g. through the history, physical exam or lab findings.

E.g. A young woman develops depressive episodes, a facial rash, oral ulcers, and headache. The depressive episodes started after the other symptoms. Labs show anti-dsDNA antibodies.

Medical conditions that can cause depressive symptoms

  • Systemic lupus erythematosus
  • Stroke
  • Huntington disease
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Parkinson disease
  • Myocardial infarction
  • Cancer
  • Endocrine disorders