Link found between depression and missing type 2 diabetes medication

Diabetes medication is more likely to be missed in people who have type 2 diabetes and symptoms of depression, new research has suggested.
A total of 104 men and women with type 2 diabetes took part in a study to help determine how depression affects people and their diabetes treatment.
They were asked about any distress they may be experiencing in relation to their diabetes and provided blood samples so their management could be measured.
The participants were also interviewed by the researchers to find out how regularly they had been taking their medication. Based on the data the average was 76 per cent of the time.
The findings suggested that just over 46 per cent had clinically significant diabetes distress and 21 per cent had some depression symptoms.
The research team said only five individuals met the criteria for major depressive disorder.
People who had higher levels of symptoms of depression did not seem to take their medication as regularly as others, the research suggested
Lead author Jeffrey Gonzalez of Yeshiva University in New York said: “Diabetes-related distress reflects the emotional and psychological reactions to the burden and stress associated with diabetes and its management.”
The study also suggested that people who had higher levels of depressive symptoms or distress tended to have fewer days on medication than others.
Gonzalez said: “When we think of clinical depression, or major depressive disorder, we typically think of the hallmark symptoms of depressed mood, loss of interest, negative thoughts about the self and future, etc.
“If there is a causal relationship, it’s likely to be cyclical where depression leads to non-adherence which in turn leads to poor control and poorer health, creating further stress and worsening of depression.”
He said that living with diabetes can often be stressful for people which can “trigger emotional distress and, sometimes, depression”.
He added: “The point of diagnosis is a good time to evaluate patients’ distress and their available resources to deal with it. Ideally, providers would approach medication management of diabetes as a collaborative process that is sensitive to the patient’s goals and concerns.”
The findings have been published in the Diabetes Care journal.

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