Depression, Anxiety, and Sucidality in U.S. Medical Students: A Literature Review and Commentary Public Deposited

Downloadable Content

Download PDF
Last Modified
  • January 13, 2020
  • Dickson, Kate
    • Affiliation: Gillings School of Global Public Health, Public Health Leadership Program
  • A growing body of literature shows that although medical students start their journey to becoming a physician with similar self-reported mental health outcomes as those of their non-medical peers, they finish their training in poorer mental health. Research on the topic of medical student mental health and wellbeing has found higher rates of anxiety, depression, and suicidality among medical students than in the general population, although exact estimates vary by study. A high quality systematic review with meta-analysis of the data on the prevalence of these disorders in medical schools nationwide would help the medical education community more fully understand the scope of the problem, and design interventions appropriately. This paper intended to conduct such a review, but limitations in the literature – especially the paucity of data on anxiety and suicidality - make such synthesis and analysis difficult, if not impossible. This paper presents the findings of the literature review, comments on the gaps and limitations of the evidence, and poses recommendations aimed at improving the quality of the research surrounding medical student mental health.
Date of publication
Resource type
Rights statement
  • In Copyright
  • Track: HC&P
  • Paper type: Other
  • Tolleson-Rinehart, Sue
  • Meltzer-Brody, Samantha
  • Master of Public Health
Academic concentration
  • Public Health
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Graduation year
  • 2018
Deposit record
  • 4078ae89-3797-4e8b-8f4b-7a9f5a272c2f

This work has no parents.