Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Post-MI Depression Affects Higher Incidence of Women

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Post-MI Depression Affects Higher Incidence of Women

Article excerpt

ORLANDO -- The higher incidence of depression after a myocardial infarction in women, compared with men, contributes to the worse outcomes that women face, according to data from a study with more than 2,400 patients.

"The clinical implication is that it's important to identify and treat symptoms of depression at the time of hospitalization for myocardial infarction [MI]," Dr. Susmita Parashar said at a conference on cardiovascular disease epidemiology and prevention sponsored by the American Heart Association.

These steps are reasonable, even though studies are still needed to test whether treating depression after an MI improves the cardiovascular outcomes of both women and men, said Dr. Parashar, a physician and epidemiologist at Emory University, Atlanta.

"Could treatment of depression after myocardial infarctions reduce the gender difference in outcomes?" she asked.

Dr. Parashar and her associates used data collected on 2,411 acute MI patients in the Prospective Registry Evaluating Myocardial Infarction Events and Recovery (PREMIER) study. Data were collected at 17 U.S. centers during January 2003 to June 2004. Patients with a documented MI were assessed for depression during their initial hospitalization and at follow-up with the Patients Health Questionnaire (PHQ).

During initial hospitalization, 29% of 752 women in the registry were diagnosed with depression by the PHQ, compared with a prevalence of 19% among 1,531 men, a statistically significant difference. (Data on depression diagnosis were not available for all patients in the registry. …

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