Network analysis of the symptoms of depressive disorders over the course of therapy: Changes in centrality measures

Seon Cheol Park, Yaeseul Kim, Kiwon Kim, Young Sup Woo, Jung Bum Kim, Eun Young Jang, Hwa Young Lee, Hyeon Woo Yim, Byung Joo Ham, Jae Min Ham, Yong Chon Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective Network analysis can be used in terms of a novel psychopathological approach for depressive syndrome. We aimed to estimate the successive network structures of depressive symptoms in patients with depressive disorder using data from the Clinical Research Center for Depression study. Methods We enrolled 1,152 South Korean adult patients with depressive disorders who were beginning treatment for first-onset or recurrent depressive episodes. We examined the network structure of the severities of the items on the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAMD) at baseline and at weeks 2, 12, 25, and 52. The node strength centrality of all the HAMD items at baseline and at week 2, 12, 25, and 52 in terms of network analysis. Results In the severity networks, the anxiety (psychic) item was the most centrally situated in the initial period (baseline and week 2), while loss of weight was the most centrally situated item in the later period (weeks 25 and 52). In addition, the number of strong edges (i.e., edges representing strong correlations) increased in the late period compared to the initial period. Conclusion Our findings support a period-specific and symptom-focused therapeutic approach that can provide complementary information to the unidimensional total HAMD score.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)48-58
Number of pages11
JournalPsychiatry Investigation
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Anxiety (psychic)
  • Centrality
  • Depressive disorders
  • Network analysis
  • Symptom-focused approach

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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