1010 GMT March 22, 2019
Patients with depression are nearly 6 times more likely to die within 6 months after an MI than those without depression. The increased risk of death in patients with depression persists up to 18 months after the MI. But despite the fact that post-MI depression is common and burdensome, the condition remains under-recognized and undertreated, psychpentral.com said.
The current study investigated the impact of gender and cardiovascular disease risk factors on the risk of developing depression and anxiety after an MI.
The study included 160 patients admitted with a myocardial infarction to the Vilnius University Hospital Santariskiu Clinics in Vilnius, Lithuania. Patients were interviewed at least 1 month after the MI to collect information on demographic (including sex, age, education, marital status) and clinical characteristics (incidence of diabetes mellitus, previous treatment for hypertension, previous MI), other cardiovascular disease risk factors (smoking, physical activity), and history of mental health issues.
The researchers found that nearly one quarter of patients in the study were depressed (24.4 percent) and of those, 28.2 percent had received treatment with antidepressants (p<0.05). The average HADS score for depression was 6.87 (±4.6) in men and 8.66 (± 3.7) in women (p<0.05). For anxiety the mean score was 7.18 (±4.6) in men and 8.20 (±3.9) in women (p<0.05).
Pranas Serpytis, lead author, said: "We found that women were more likely to develop anxiety and depression after a heart attack than men. More research is needed to discover the possible reasons for this."