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[IP] Study Shows Diabetes Doubles Risk for Depression



Item #5
Study Shows Diabetes Doubles Risk for Depression
www.diabetesincontrol.com/issue54/item5F.htm


Americans with diabetes are twice as likely to suffer from depression as 
those
who do not have diabetes, according to a new study to be published in the 
June
issue of Diabetes Care 2001.

The study, conducted jointly by researchers at the Washington University 
School
of Medicine and the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in St. 
Louis,
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 
hyperglycemia
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 
the
increased rates of depression in people with diabetes. Their most recent 
study
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
population.

The authors said it still isnt clear why depression can lead to diabetes, 
or
vice versa. How these two diseases interact is not fully understood. 
However,
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 
well
advised to seek treatment for both, Dr. Lustman said. "Its important for 
people
to realize that if you have both (depression and diabetes), treat both and 
both
will improve," he said. It is particularly important not to ignore the
depression, as other studies have shown it can accelerate heart disease in 
women
with diabetes, he added.  Diabetes Care, June 2001


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