12.8 What you should know about the course of depression
Depression is mostly a self-limiting condition. A condition is called self-limiting when it goes away without specific medical intervention. This is the case for about half of the cases of depression. However, the other 50% of individuals who have their first episode of depression will go on to have a second episode. And most of these individuals (about 85% of them) are likely to have more episodes.
Unfortunately, the main complication of depression is death from suicide. Up to 15% of individuals with severe depression (about 1 in 7) will die from suicide unless they are properly treated and followed up. Additionally, those with depression are more likely to develop other medical problems such as hypertension, other heart conditions, diabetes mellitus or infectious conditions.