Nav: Home

Depression often co-occurs with joint diseases

April 01, 2015

Those suffering from depressive symptoms have an increased risk for physical diseases, especially for arthrosis and arthritis. These findings were reported by researchers from the University of Basel and the Ruhr-University Bochum. Their results, based on data from 14,300 people living in Switzerland, have been published in the scientific journal Frontiers in Public Health.

Depression is one of the leading health risks and affects 350 million people worldwide. In Switzerland, around 400,000 people individuals suffer from it each year. Several studies in countries around the globe have shown that depression is associated with an elevated risk for a variety of physical diseases. However, for Switzerland, a country ranked as one of the wealthiest and with one of the best and most expensive health care systems worldwide, the association between depressive symptoms and physical diseases had yet been unclear.

A research group led by Prof. Gunther Meinlschmidt from the Faculty of Psychology at the University of Basel and the Faculty of Medicine at the Ruhr-University Bochum has now attempted to close this gap. They conducted analyses, using data from the Swiss Health Survey, comprising of 14,348 subjects aged 15 years and older.

Risk for arthrosis and arthritis

The psychologists report that participants with depressive symptoms have a higher risk of suffering from a physical disease. Roughly one third of the participants suffering from depression also suffer from at least one physical disease. This association was evident especially with arthrosis and arthritis that are degenerative and inflammatory diseases of the joints.

More studies are now needed to further scrutinize the association between depression and joint diseases. According to the study, it can be speculated that depressive symptoms result in a lack of interest in physical activity, which may then lead to joint diseases. However, it could also be the other way around: People with joint diseases may be impaired in their daily activities negatively affecting their mental health and ultimately resulting in depressive symptoms. Or: Joint diseases are often caused by inflammatory processes, which have also been speculated for certain types of depressive disorders. Therefore, inflammatory processes may represent the link between depressive symptoms and physical diseases.

Improving health care

"A better understanding of the association between depressive symptoms and physical diseases in Switzerland is the basis for a better health care provision for people suffering from mental disorders as well as physical diseases", says Gunther Meinlschmidt, author of the study. In addition, these findings are also important for health care policy, for example by improving the precision of future estimates of societal burden and costs related to depression.
-end-
Original source

Donja Rodic, Andrea Hans Meyer, Gunther Meinlschmidt
The association between depressive symptoms and physical diseases in Switzerland: a cross-sectional general population study
Frontiers in Public Health, 23 March 2015 | doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2015.00047

University of Basel

Related Depression Articles:

A biological mechanism for depression
Researchers report that in depressed individuals there are increased amounts of an unmodified structural protein, called tubulin, in lipid rafts compared with non-depressed individuals.
Depression in adults who are overweight or obese
In an analysis of primary care records of 519,513 UK adults who were overweight or obese between 2000-2016 and followed up until 2019, the incidence of new cases of depression was 92 per 10,000 people per year.
Why stress doesn't always cause depression
Rats susceptible to anhedonia, a core symptom of depression, possess more serotonin neurons after being exposed to chronic stress, but the effect can be reversed through amygdala activation, according to new research in JNeurosci.
Which comes first: Smartphone dependency or depression?
New research suggests a person's reliance on his or her smartphone predicts greater loneliness and depressive symptoms, as opposed to the other way around.
Depression breakthrough
Major depressive disorder -- referred to colloquially as the 'black dog' -- has been identified as a genetic cause for 20 distinct diseases, providing vital information to help detect and manage high rates of physical illnesses in people diagnosed with depression.
CPAP provides relief from depression
Researchers have found that continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can improve depression symptoms in patients suffering from cardiovascular diseases.
Post-natal depression in dads linked to depression in their teenage daughters
Fathers as well as mothers can experience post-natal depression -- and it is linked to emotional problems for their teenage daughters, new research has found.
Being overweight likely to cause depression, even without health complications
A largescale genomic analysis has found the strongest evidence yet that being overweight causes depression, even in the absence of other health problems.
Don't let depression keep you from exercising
Exercise may be just as crucial to a depression patient's good health as finding an effective antidepressant.
Having an abortion does not lead to depression
Having an abortion does not increase a woman's risk for depression, according to a new University of Maryland School of Public Health-led study of nearly 400,000 women.
More Depression News and Depression Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Mindset
In the past few months, human beings have come together to fight a global threat. This hour, TED speakers explore how our response can be the catalyst to fight another global crisis: climate change. Guests include political strategist Tom Rivett-Carnac, diplomat Christiana Figueres, climate justice activist Xiye Bastida, and writer, illustrator, and artist Oliver Jeffers.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#562 Superbug to Bedside
By now we're all good and scared about antibiotic resistance, one of the many things coming to get us all. But there's good news, sort of. News antibiotics are coming out! How do they get tested? What does that kind of a trial look like and how does it happen? Host Bethany Brookeshire talks with Matt McCarthy, author of "Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic", about the ins and outs of testing a new antibiotic in the hospital.
Now Playing: Radiolab

Speedy Beet
There are few musical moments more well-worn than the first four notes of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. But in this short, we find out that Beethoven might have made a last-ditch effort to keep his music from ever feeling familiar, to keep pushing his listeners to a kind of psychological limit. Big thanks to our Brooklyn Philharmonic musicians: Deborah Buck and Suzy Perelman on violin, Arash Amini on cello, and Ah Ling Neu on viola. And check out The First Four Notes, Matthew Guerrieri's book on Beethoven's Fifth. Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate.