Nav: Home

NYU Meyers nursing research identifies predictors of depression among women with diabetes

November 09, 2016

Study shows almost 1 in 5 women with diabetes also suffer from depression; younger age, poor health, not completing high school, inactivity due to pain or poor health were all women-specific predictors of comorbid depression

Research shows that adults with diabetes are disproportionately prone to depression. A breadth of research has shown this risk to be significantly greater for women than it is for men.

"The diabetes/depression comorbidity is associated with greater healthcare costs, poorer self-care, less medication compliance and dietary adherence, a greater diabetes symptom burden, poorer quality of life, and premature mortality," says Dr. Shiela Strauss, associate professor of nursing in the New York University Rory Meyers College of Nursing (NYU Meyers).

Dr. Strauss notes that while a few studies have examined the predictors of depression in women with diabetes, they are limited in a number of important respects. Now, a new study just published in The Diabetes Educator, "Predictors of Depression among Adult Women with Diabetes in the United States: An Analysis Using NHANES Data from 2007-2012," establishes various depression predictors among adult women of diverse ages and races and ethnicities.

Dr. Strauss analyzed NHANES (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) data, a program of studies designed to assess the health and nutritional status of adults and children in the United States. NHANES is a major program of the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and is responsible for producing vital and health statistics.

"NHANES is exceptional in the collection of various types of data," says Dr. Strauss. "By combining interviews with physical examinations, NHANES uniquely gathers sociodemographic and physiological data, including existing medical conditions and history."

The researchers confined their analysis to the specific NHANES data collected from 2007 to 2012 among women aged twenty or older with diabetes. The study sample included a diverse group of 946 women. The team found that 19% of the women represented by their study sample was clinically depressed according to a depression questionnaire that they completed.

"Our study sample represented nearly nine million women aged twenty or over in the U.S. with diabetes from 2007-2012," explained Dr. Strauss. "Our findings indicate that nearly 1.7 million of these women also had depression comorbidity. This is truly a staggering number of individuals."

"Consistent with research conducted among both male and female adults with diabetes, Strauss' results indicate that younger age, less education, self-rated poor health, and frequent pain and physical and functional impairment are significant predictors of depression among adult women with diabetes. Although existing research involving both adult men and women with diabetes has identified the importance of various diabetes-related factors, such as years living with diabetes and use of insulin, in predicting co-morbid depression, this was not the case when these variables were considered among women alone."

"What's particularly salient to me is that women who were limited in their ability to carry on their usual activities because of pain, or who were inactive due to poor health, were especially likely to have comorbid depression," said Dr. Strauss. "These may not be the first factors people would associate with depression in adult women living with diabetes; empirical evidence only goes so far. But through our analysis of the NHANES dataset we were able to identify them as strong predictors of comorbid depression among women."

The results from Dr. Strauss' study will enable the targeting of especially vulnerable women for screening and depression treatment, recognizing that the specific combination of these female-specific characteristics are not the same as those combinations of characteristics identified in populations that include both men and women with diabetes.
Researcher Affiliations: Shiela M. Strauss1, Ph.D., Mary T. Rosedale1, Ph.D., PMHNP-BC, NEA-BC, David M. Rindskopf2, Ph.D.

1. New York University Rory Meyers College of Nursing

2. Graduate School and University Center of the City University of New York

Declaration of Interest: The authors declare no funding from sponsored research. The authors also declare no financial interests related to the research, nor compensation for preparing the manuscript.

About the NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing

NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing is a global leader in nursing education, research, and practice. It offers a Bachelor of Science with a major in Nursing, a Master of Science and Post-Master's Certificate Programs, a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree and a Doctor of Philosophy in nursing research and theory development.

New York University

Related Diabetes Articles:

The role of vitamin A in diabetes
There has been no known link between diabetes and vitamin A -- until now.
Can continuous glucose monitoring improve diabetes control in patients with type 1 diabetes who inject insulin
Two studies in the Jan. 24/31 issue of JAMA find that use of a sensor implanted under the skin that continuously monitors glucose levels resulted in improved levels in patients with type 1 diabetes who inject insulin multiple times a day, compared to conventional treatment.
Complications of type 2 diabetes affect quality of life, care can lead to diabetes burnout
T2D Lifestyle, a national survey by Health Union of more than 400 individuals experiencing type 2 diabetes (T2D), reveals that patients not only struggle with commonly understood complications, but also numerous lesser known ones that people do not associate with diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes and obesity -- what do we really know?
Social and economic factors have led to a dramatic rise in type 2 diabetes and obesity around the world.
A better way to predict diabetes
An international team of researchers has discovered a simple, accurate new way to predict which women with gestational diabetes will develop type 2 diabetes after delivery.
More Diabetes News and Diabetes Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Erasing The Stigma
Many of us either cope with mental illness or know someone who does. But we still have a hard time talking about it. This hour, TED speakers explore ways to push past — and even erase — the stigma. Guests include musician and comedian Jordan Raskopoulos, neuroscientist and psychiatrist Thomas Insel, psychiatrist Dixon Chibanda, anxiety and depression researcher Olivia Remes, and entrepreneur Sangu Delle.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#537 Science Journalism, Hold the Hype
Everyone's seen a piece of science getting over-exaggerated in the media. Most people would be quick to blame journalists and big media for getting in wrong. In many cases, you'd be right. But there's other sources of hype in science journalism. and one of them can be found in the humble, and little-known press release. We're talking with Chris Chambers about doing science about science journalism, and where the hype creeps in. Related links: The association between exaggeration in health related science news and academic press releases: retrospective observational study Claims of causality in health news: a randomised trial This...