Quantifying the level of difficulty to treat major depressive disorder with antidepressants: Treatment Resistance to Antidepressants Evaluation Scale


The present study aimed to develop a new scale to evaluate the level of difficulty in treating major depressive disorder with antidepressants based on the lifetime treatment profile.


In addition to evaluating the difficulty of treatment with antidepressants (A subscale), the Treatment Resistance to Antidepressants Evaluation Scale (TRADES) is comprised of a subscale to account for the attributes that compromise the efficacy of treatment (B subscale). One hundred and six participants aged 18 to 65 years with remitted major depressive disorder were enrolled. Eligible cases were those with at least 2 years from disease onset until the scoring date of the TRADES (the index date), with a complete treatment record. Various psychosocial and clinical features, such as neuroticism, harm avoidance, and utilization of psychiatric services, were used to validate the TRADES.


The mean duration of the course before and after the index date were 5.5 ± 3.5 and 3.1 ± 1.7 years, respectively. In a multiple regression analysis, the final total scores of the TRADES independently correlated with higher levels of neuroticism and harm avoidance. Total scores were also associated with a higher utilization of psychiatric outpatient and admission services before the index date. Furthermore, it is thought that total scores could predict a higher number of visits to psychiatric outpatient, emergency, and admission services following the index date.


The TRADES has acceptable validity and could help to quantify the level of treatment difficulty with antidepressants in major depressive disorder.