UB Study Finds Depressive Symptoms In Women May Lead To Alcohol Problems; Relationship Reverses In Men

June 14, 1996

BOSTON -- One of the few longitudinal studies to investigate the relationship between gender, depression and alcohol problems in a large community sample has shown that in women, depressive symptoms may lead to alcohol problems over time, while in men, problems with alcohol might subsequently lead to depression.

The results were presented here today (Friday, June 14) at the annual meeting of the Society for Epidemiologic Research.

Beth Moscato, Ph.D., research assistant professor in the UB Department of Social and Preventive Medicine and lead author of the study found that for women, depression predicted subsequent alcohol problems.

Women who initially were classified as depressed were 2 1/2 times more likely to have alcohol problems after three years, than women who were not depressed, she said.

In men, results suggested that alcohol problems appeared first, and were somewhat more likely to lead to depression after three years.

"These findings should be a flag to health practitioners," Moscato said. "If a woman has a high level of depressive symptoms, the practitioner should also evaluate drinking problems over time. If a man has a drinking problem, he may need to be monitored for depression."

This community study was based on 986 adults who were followed for seven years. Data was collected at the beginning of the study and at years 3 and 7. In addition to the gender differences that appeared, results showed that an earlier bout of depression or alcohol problems was the strongest predictor of subsequent depressive symptoms or alcohol problems in both men and women.

"Depression and alcoholism are major public-health concerns," Moscato said. "Differences between males and females haven't been examined systematically. Women have been understudied, particularly regarding alcohol problems.

"If we can sort out the nature of these relationships in relation to gender, we can better define who is at risk for which condition at what point in time. We can then target interventions to these high risk groups."

Contributing researchers were Maria Zielezny and James R. Marshall, UB Department of Social and Preventive Medicine; Marcia Russell and Pamela Mudar, Research Institute on Addictions in Buffalo; Gladys Egri, UB Department of Psychiatry, and Evelyn Bromet, Department of Psychiatry, SUNY at Stony Brook.

University at Buffalo

Related Depression Articles from Brightsurf:

Children with social anxiety, maternal history of depression more likely to develop depression
Although researchers have known for decades that depression runs in families, new research from Binghamton University, State University of New York, suggests that children suffering from social anxiety may be at particular risk for depression in the future.

Depression and use of marijuana among US adults
This study examined the association of depression with cannabis use among US adults and the trends for this association from 2005 to 2016.

Maternal depression increases odds of depression in offspring, study shows
Depression in mothers during and after pregnancy increased the odds of depression in offspring during adolescence and adulthood by 70%.

Targeting depression: Researchers ID symptom-specific targets for treatment of depression
For the first time, physician-scientists at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center have identified two clusters of depressive symptoms that responded to two distinct neuroanatomical treatment targets in patients who underwent transcranial magnetic brain stimulation (TMS) for treatment of depression.

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.

Read More: Depression News and Depression Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.