Major depression is 'highly prevalent' among diabetic patients, according to findings published in the medical journal Diabetes Care.
Dr Chaoyang Li and colleagues from the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, analysed data from the 2006 Behavioural Risk Factor Surveillance System, a standardised telephone survey that assessed risk factors and chronic conditions among US adults at least 18 years of age.
The analytic sample included 18 814 subjects with diabetes.
Taking into account the possible influence of age, the prevalence of major depression was 8.3 percent, and ranged from a low of 2.0 percent in Connecticut to a high of 28.8 percent in Alaska.
"The rate was low at ages 18 to 29 years, increased at ages 30 to 39 years and decreased after age 40 years," Li's team reports. "Women had a higher rate of major depression than men."
What the study revealed
The investigators observed large differences in the prevalence of major depression among racial and ethnic subgroups. The lowest rate was seen among Asians (1.1 percent), and the highest rate was found among American Indians and Alaska Natives (27.8 percent).
The rate of major depression was higher among subjects with type 2 diabetes who were currently using insulin than those with type 1 diabetes and those with type 2 diabetes who were currently not using insulin.
Overall, the researchers conclude: "Our results indicate that a substantial number of people with diabetes are at an increased risk of having major depression, and those who care for patients with diabetes should routinely screen them for major depression." – (ReutersHealth)
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