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[IP] Study Shows Diabetes Doubles Risk for Depression
Study Shows Diabetes Doubles Risk for Depression
Americans with diabetes are twice as likely to suffer from depression as
who do not have diabetes, according to a new study to be published in the
issue of Diabetes Care 2001.
The study, conducted jointly by researchers at the Washington University
of Medicine and the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in St.
Missouri, analyzed 25 years of data to firmly establish the prevalence of co
morbid depression among patients with diabetes.
While previous studies have shown a link between depression and
and an increased risk for diabetes complications, this is the first study to
provide a firm estimate of how likely patients are to suffer from both
depression and diabetes.
Lead researcher Dr. Patrick Lustman and his team were the first to document
increased rates of depression in people with diabetes. Their most recent
found that women with diabetes were even more likely than men to become
depressed, mirroring the higher risk for depression for women in the general
The authors said it still isnt clear why depression can lead to diabetes,
vice versa. How these two diseases interact is not fully understood.
the physical inactivity and overeating, which are often associated with
depression, may be at least partially to blame. That would also explain why
previous studies have shown that treating depression and eliminating these
problems can improve glycemic control.
Regardless of what causes the link between the diseases, patients would be
advised to seek treatment for both, Dr. Lustman said. "Its important for
to realize that if you have both (depression and diabetes), treat both and
will improve," he said. It is particularly important not to ignore the
depression, as other studies have shown it can accelerate heart disease in
with diabetes, he added. Diabetes Care, June 2001
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