Connection between high blood pressure and depression in elderly

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A study conducted in Spain, which was recently published in Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, found a relationship between high blood pressure and depression in elderly subjects. The study, which included participants ages 55 and over, examined 2,523 individuals with hypertension (61.0%; 41.7% were stage 1 and 19.3% were stage 2 hypertensive) and found that 12.4% (314) suffered from depression. Patients with stage 2 hypertension were found to have a greater likelihood of depressive symptoms. The following is an excerpt of an article from Medical News Today that discusses the study more:

A large, stratified random sample of individuals from the census list aged 55 and over was selected. An epidemiological screening design was implemented, and standardized Spanish versions of assessment instruments were used, including the Geriatric Mental State (GMS), its computerized diagnostic program, AGECAT, and the History and Aetiology Schedule. The history of medical diseases was documented by means of the Risk Factor Questionnaire designed by the EURODEM Workgroup. The assessment of blood pressure followed World Health Organization standards, modified by the European Society of Hypertension, and Joint National Committee Seventh Report criteria were used for the diagnosis of hypertension. The specific hypothesis of the association of hypertension with depression was tested by means of logistic regression (LR) analysis.

At the end of the investigation, hypertension was documented in 2,523 individuals (61.0%; 41.7% were stage 1 and 19.3% were stage 2 hypertensives), and 314 of them (12.4%) were depressed. Results of LR analysis show, in the unadjusted model, that OR for depression was significantly higher in stage 2 hypertension (OR = 1.46, 95% CI = 1.12 – 1.90).

Click here to read the rest of this article from Medical News Today

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