Depression tied to all-cause and cardiovascular mortality in elders

  • Wei J & al.
  • Br J Psychiatry
  • 10 Apr 2019

  • International Clinical Digest
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Takeaway

  • Late-life depression was associated with a higher risks for early all-cause and cardiovascular mortality among community-dwelling elders.

Why this matters

  • Late-life depression, which is largely untreated, is associated with a higher prevalence of somatic depressive symptoms compared with depression in younger adults.

Study design

  • Meta-analysis of 61 prospective cohort studies involving 198,589 older adults (aged 60-85 years) identified after a search on PubMed, EMBASE, Web of Science, and PsycINFO between January 1966 and February 2018.
  • Funding: None disclosed.

Key results

  • Risk for all-cause mortality was significantly higher in older adults with depression (risk ratio [RR], 1.34; 95% CI, 1.27-1.42; I2=54.4%) vs those without.
  • Risk for cardiovascular mortality was higher in older adults with depression (RR, 1.31; 95% CI, 1.20-1.43; I2=75.9%) vs those without.
  • The association remained significant after excluding cohorts that appeared asymmetric in a funnel plot: all-cause mortality (RR, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.15-1.30) and cardiovascular mortality (RR, 1.11; 95% CI, 1.01-1.22).

Limitations

  • Heterogeneity across studies.

 Coauthored with Antara Ghosh, PhD

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