Depressive disorders in long-term survivors of stroke. Associations with demographic and social factors, functional status, and brain lesion volume.
Sharpe M., Hawton K., Seagroatt V., Bamford J., House A., Molyneux A., Sandercock P., Warlow C.
Sixty surviving patients from a community-based stroke register who had computerised tomography (CT) scan evidence of a single brain lesion were interviewed three to five years after their first ever stroke. Depression (DSM-III-R major depression, partially resolved major depression, and dysthymia) was present in 11 (18%) of the patients and was associated with impaired physical and cognitive functioning, greater age, residence in an institution, absence of a close personal relationship, and larger original brain lesion. Of these variables, only functional dependence (odds ratio 16.4; confidence interval 1.6-170), larger lesion volume (6.6; 1-50), and female sex (8; 1.1-56) remained significantly associated with depression after controlling for all other variables. We conclude that depression in long-term survivors of stroke has many of the same associations as depression in non-stroke elderly populations. Depression in long-term stroke survivors may also be associated with larger original brain lesions, although this requires confirmation in a prospective study.