National Addiction & HIV Data Archive Program

YMDELT: YOUTH: LIFETIME MAJOR DEPRESSIVE EPISODE (MDE)

NOTE:  The variables in this section are recoded variables
that were created from one or more of the edited variables
from the preceding section.

NOTE:  Since 2005, all adult respondents aged 18 or older
and adolescent (youth) respondents aged 12 to 17 have been
administered separate age-appropriate depression modules
designed to measure whether or not respondents had
experienced a major depressive episode (MDE) in their
lifetime and past year.  Relevant data from both adults and
adolescents were used to create recoded past year and
lifetime MDE variables.  Even though these MDE recodes used
the relevant sections of the questionnaire for adults and
adolescents, single variables were created for the entire
population prior to 2008.  For example, the lifetime MDE
variable in the datasets prior to 2008 contained both the
adolescent lifetime MDE recode created using data from the
adolescent section and the adult lifetime MDE recode created
using data from the adult section.

In 2008, instead of a single set of variables containing
the recoded MDE data for both adult and youth respondents,
two recoded sets of MDE variables were created for
adolescents and adults separately.  This change was due to
context effects stemming from changes in the mental health
module which precedes the adult depression section within
the questionnaire.  Based on an analysis to determine the
potential presence of context effects, it was determined
that the adult depression data are not considered comparable
to prior years and therefore all adult depression recode
variables starting in 2008 had to be renamed to indicate
the lack of comparability with prior years.  See the 2008
Recoded Mental Health Module Variable Documentation Appendix
for more information.

In 2009, changes were made to the youth mental health
service utilization (YMHSU) questions that preceded the
adolescent depression questions.  These changes included the
replacement of five questions that asked about receipt of
special education services and school counseling, and time
spent in jail or foster care with questions that asked about
receipt of mental health services in the education and
justice system sectors.  Due to this change, a context
effect analysis was done using data from the first 6 months
of the 2009 NSDUH and sought to determine whether changes in
the YMHSU module affected responses to the first three
adolescent depression questions and the lifetime and past
year MDE estimates.  The results of the analysis showed
these changes in 2009 did not appear to affect the estimates
of adolescent MDE.

The youth depression data and associated MDE estimates were
not impacted by either of the 2008 adult changes or the 2009
YMHSU module changes and are considered comparable to prior
years. However, despite remaining comparable to prior years,
the variables that shared the same variable names for both
youth and adult depression data were assigned new names in
2008 since the adult data were no longer comparable with
prior data. These renamed youth variables can be used in
comparisons or analyses with data prior to 2008 by renaming
the recoded adolescent depression variables the same across
all the years. Youth depression variables that did not

require renaming are noted specifically in the comments
above the variables below. Specific details about these
recoded variables and further information about context
effects on the MDE estimates are provided in the Recoded
Depression Variable Documentation Appendix.

The following variable, YMDELT, classifies an adolescent as
having a major depressive episode (MDE) in their lifetime
(YMDELT=1) if they reported experiencing at least 5 out of
the 9 criteria used to define an adolescent as having had
MDE in their lifetime, where at least one of the criteria
is a depressed mood or loss of interest or pleasure in daily
activities (YODSMMDE=1).

An adolescent was classified as NOT having a major
depressive episode (MDE) in their lifetime (YMDELT=2) if
they met either of these conditions:

(1) Reported experiencing fewer than 5 out of the 9
criteria used to define an adolescent as having had
MDE in their lifetime (YODSMMDE=2).

(2) If the number of criteria used to define an
adolescent as having had MDE in their lifetime is
unknown (YODSMMDE=98) and the respondent reported
at least one of the following:

(I) Never having had a period of time lasting
several days or longer when felt sad, empty,
or depressed (YODPREV=2), discouraged or
hopeless about how things were going in life
(YODSCEV=2), or lost interest and became
bored with most things usually enjoyable
(YOLOSEV=2).

(II) Experienced the feelings in (I), but they did
not last most of the day, almost every day
for two weeks or longer [YOLSI2WK=2 or
YODPR2WK=2].

(III) Experienced the feelings in (I) most of the
day, almost every day for two weeks or
longer, but the feelings lasted less than an
hour when mood was most severe and frequent
(YOWRHRS=1).

(IV) Experienced the feelings in (I) most of the
day, almost every day for two weeks or longer
for at least an hour during those times when
mood was most severe and frequent, but the
bad feelings were mild (YOWRDST=1), there was
never a time when you felt so bad that
nothing could cheer you up (YOWRCHR=4), and
there was never a time when you felt so bad
that you could not carry out your daily
activities (YOWRIMP=4).

(V) Experienced the feelings in (I) most of the
day, almost every day for two weeks or longer
for at least an hour with bad feelings that
were more than mild or at some point could
not be cheered up or could not carry out
daily activities, but never had any other
problems during those weeks, such as changes
in sleep, eating, energy, the ability to keep
mind on things, or feeling badly about self
(YODPPROB=2).
            
ValueLabelUnweighted
Frequency
%
1 Yes (YODSMMDE=1) 2,3594.3%
2 No (See comment above) 14,85326.9%
Missing Data
-9 Aged 18+/Unknown (Otherwise) 38,02268.8%
Total 55,234 100%

Based upon 17,212 valid cases out of 55,234 total cases.

Summary Statistics

  • mean: 1.86
  • median: 2.00
  • mode: 2.00
  • minimum: 1
  • maximum: 2
  • standard deviation: 0.34

Location: 6275-6276 (width: 2; decimal: 0)

Variable Type: numeric

(Range of) Missing Values: -9

Notes

Source: This variable was taken from: National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2009.

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Disclaimer: The frequencies for this variable may not be weighted. They are purely descriptive and may not be representative of the study population. Please use with caution and consult the study documentation.