Direct-to-consumer antidepressant ads and young adults' beliefs about depression

Soontae An, Hyun Seung Jin, Jane D. Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


This study examined the extent to which exposure to direct-to-consumer (DTC) antidepressant ads is associated with young adults' understanding of depression as a medical condition. A vignette-based questionnaire was presented to 285 college students. Among those who had not experienced depressive symptoms, high exposure to a DTC antidepressant commercial was significantly associated with recognition of depression cases and listing antidepressants as a treatment option. As their exposure to the DTC ad increased, respondents also demonstrated a more positive evaluation of antidepressant treatment. Such effects were not found, however, for those who had experienced depressive symptoms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-278
Number of pages20
JournalHealth Marketing Quarterly
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2009


  • Antidepressants
  • Depression
  • Direct-to-consumer advertising
  • Young adults


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