Depression doubles the risk of death from coronary artery disease
Depression appears to double the chance of dying in any given year for patients with coronary artery disease, according to a new study.
The researchers said such mental distress was a “stronger risk factor” than age, having had a heart attack, or diabetes.
The effect was seen if the person was depressed before or after diagnosis of the disease.
Nearly 25,000 people with coronary artery disease were tracked over an average of 10 years and about 15 per cent of them ended up being diagnosed with depression, according to a paper published in the European Heart Journal.
Dr Heidi May, a cardiovascular epidemiologist at Intermountain Medical Centre Heart Institute in Salt Lake City, said: “No matter how long or how short it was, patients were found to have twice the risk of dying compared to those who didn’t have a follow-up diagnosis of depression.
“Depression was the strongest risk factor for dying, compared to any other risk factors we evaluated. That included age, heart failure, diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney failure, or having a heart attack or stroke.
“We’ve completed several depression-related studies and been looking at this connection for many years.
“The data just keeps building on itself, showing that if you have heart disease and depression and it’s not appropriately treated in a timely fashion, it’s not a good thing for your long-term wellbeing.”
Source: The Independent