Get Alert
Please Wait... Processing your request... Please Wait.
You must sign in to sign-up for alerts.

Please confirm that your email address is correct, so you can successfully receive this alert.

Perspectives in Global Mental Health   |    
Depression in a Latino Man in New York
Renato D. Alarcón, M.D.; María A. Oquendo, M.D.; Milton L. Wainberg, M.D.
Am J Psychiatry 2014;171:506-508. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.2013.13101292
View Author and Article Information

Dr. Oquendo receives royalties for the Columbia Suicide Severity Rating Scale and has received financial compensation from Pfizer for the safety evaluation of a clinical facility; she was the recipient of a grant from Eli Lilly to support a year’s salary for the Lilly Suicide Scholar; she has received unrestricted educational grants or lecture fees from AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, Janssen, Otsuko, Pfizer, Sanofi-Aventis, and Shire; her family owns stock in Bristol-Myers Squibb. Drs. Alarcón and Wainberg report no financial relationships with commercial interests.

Supported in part by NIH T32 grant MH096724.

From the Department of Psychiatry and Psychology, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, Minn.; and Columbia University and New York State Psychiatric Institute, New York.

Copyright © 2014 by the American Psychiatric Association

Received October 01, 2013; Accepted October 07, 2013.


This case illustrates some of the issues that may affect a Latino patient’s presentation. Although the patient’s constellation of symptoms are classically representative of major depression, the patient also raises themes regarding the process of immigration, subsequent challenges in acculturation and identification with the host culture versus the culture of origin, and culture-specific notions about causes of symptoms. In addition to some of the special features of stigma in Latino cultures, the prominence of physical concerns in the presentation and the use of traditional healers contribute to the complexity of selecting appropriate interventions for this young man.

Abstract Teaser
Figures in this Article

Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.
Sign In Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.
Sign In to Access Full Content
Sign in via Athens (What is this?)
Athens is a service for single sign-on which enables access to all of an institution's subscriptions on- or off-site.
Not a subscriber?

Subscribe Now/Learn More

PsychiatryOnline subscription options offer access to the DSM-5 library, books, journals, CME, and patient resources. This all-in-one virtual library provides psychiatrists and mental health professionals with key resources for diagnosis, treatment, research, and professional development.

Need more help? PsychiatryOnline Customer Service may be reached by emailing PsychiatryOnline@psych.org or by calling 800-368-5777 (in the U.S.) or 703-907-7322 (outside the U.S.).



Bagayogo  I;  Interian  A;  Escobar  JI:  Transcultural aspects of somatic symptoms in the context of depressive disorders, in  Cultural Psychiatry . Edited by Alarcón  R.  Basel, Switzerland,  Karger, 2013, pp 64–74
Koss  J:  Somatization and somatic complaint syndromes among Latinos: overview and ethnopsychological perspectives.  Transcult Psychiatr Res Rev 1990; 27:5–29
Balsa  AI;  McGuire  TG:  Prejudice, clinical uncertainty, and stereotyping as sources of health disparities.  J Health Econ 2003; 22:89–116
[CrossRef] | [PubMed]
Soto  G:  Being mean, in  Growing Up Latino: Memoirs and Stories . Edited by Augenbraum  H;  Stavans  I.  Boston,  Houghton Mifflin, 1993, pp 274–279
Escobar  JI;  Vega  WA:  Mental health and immigration’s AAAs: where are we and where do we go from here? J Nerv Ment Dis 2000; 188:736–740
[CrossRef] | [PubMed]
Pumariega  AJ;  Rothe  E:  Leaving no children or families outside: the challenges of immigration.  Am J Orthopsychiatry 2010; 80:505–515
[CrossRef] | [PubMed]
Berry  J:  Conceptual approaches to acculturation, in  Acculturation: Advances in Theory, Measurement, and Applied Research . Edited by Chun  KM;  Organista  PB;  Marin  G.  Washington, DC,  American Psychological Association, 2003, pp 17–37
Tseng  W-S:  Culture-embedded indigenous healing practices, in  Handbook of Cultural Psychiatry .  San Diego,  Academic Press, 2001, pp 515–537
Kleinman  A:  Rethinking Psychiatry: From Cultural Category to Personal Experience .  New York,  Free Press, 1988
Carrillo  E:  Assessment and treatment of the Latino patient, in  The Latino Psychiatric Patient: Assessment and Treatment . Edited by López  AG;  Carrillo  E.  Washington, DC,  American Psychiatric Publishing, 2001, pp 37–53
Lewis-Fernández  R;  Garrido-Castillo  P;  Bennasar  MC;  Parrilla  EM;  Laria  AJ;  Ma  G;  Petkova  E:  Distress, childhood trauma, and ataque de nervios among Puerto Rican psychiatric outpatients.  Am J Psychiatry 2002; 159:1603–1605
[CrossRef] | [PubMed]
Alarcón  R;  Mrazek  DA:  Farmacogenómica psiquiátrica: actualización y perspectivas, in  Genética y Farmacogenómica en Psiquiatría . Edited by Silva  H.  Santiago, Chile,  Ediciones SONEPSYN, 2007, pp 59–79
Alarcón  R:  Culture, cultural factors, and psychiatric diagnosis: review and projections.  World Psychiatry 2009; 8:131–139
Berry  J:  Acculturation and identity, in  Textbook of Cultural Psychiatry . Edited by Bhugra  D;  Bhui  K.  Cambridge, UK,  Cambridge University Press, 2007, pp 169–178
References Container

CME Activity

There is currently no quiz available for this resource. Please click here to go to the CME page to find another.
Submit a Comments
Please read the other comments before you post yours. Contributors must reveal any conflict of interest.
Comments are moderated and will appear on the site at the discertion of APA editorial staff.

* = Required Field
(if multiple authors, separate names by comma)
Example: John Doe

Related Content
The American Psychiatric Publishing Textbook of Geriatric Psychiatry, 4th Edition > Chapter 2.  >
DSM-5™ Clinical Cases > Chapter 18.  >
DSM-5™ Clinical Cases > Chapter 12.  >
The American Psychiatric Publishing Textbook of Psychopharmacology, 4th Edition > Chapter 53.  >
DSM-5™ Clinical Cases > Chapter 3.  >
Topic Collections
Psychiatric News
APA Guidelines
PubMed Articles