Depression and the Future

In the Victorian era, Idiopathic Adrenal Atrophy was the rather grandiose name given to an illness whose principal feature was small adrenal glands. It was only with the passing years that the medical firmament came to realize that this ‘condition’ actually resulted from the fact that the bodies of the poor were used to teach anatomy. In actual fact, it was the poor who had relatively enlarged adrenal glands in comparison to those who were better off. One might speculate as to why this difference in the size of glands so fundamentally involved in the hypothalamicpituitary- axis (and, hence with the regulation of stress hormones) persisted, but the difference itself was beyond speculation. Indeed, a new condition was created to account for it.


Mental Health Political Process Mental Health Service User Private Finance Initiative Wealth Disparity 
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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

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