Antidepressants may not clear up all the symptoms of depression, research has indicated, which could leave patients more dependent on home care.
According to researchers from the University of Texas Southwestern, even patients who showed a clear response to the treatment were not cured of symptoms such as insomnia, sadness and decreased concentration.
However, it was found that thoughts of suicide did not usually continue during treatment.
Dr Shawn McClintock, lead author, explained: "Widely used antidepressant medications, while working overall, missed these symptoms. If patients have persistent residual symptoms, these individuals have a high probability of incomplete recovery."
This follows research at the University of Alberta which revealed that treating depression could have long term health benefits.
Adults who undertook a course of antidepressants were three times less likely to still be depressed eight years later, in comparison with those who did not take the medication, research showed.