A new study has revealed that nearly one in five women with diabetes also suffer from depression.
Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a bank of surveys created to assess the health and nutritional status of adults and children in American, was used to look at the health of women aged 20 years or older with diabetes between 2007 and 2012.
The sample study revealed out of the 946 women who filled out a depression questionnaire, 19 per cent were found to be clinically depressed.
Lead author Dr. Shiela Strauss, associate professor of nursing in the New York University Rory Meyers College of Nursing (NYU Meyers) said the results will be used to help target women for screening and depression treatment.
“The diabetes/depression comorbidity is associated with greater healthcare costs, poorer self-care, less medication compliance and dietary adherence, a greater diabetes symptom burde, poorer quality of life, and premature mortality,” said Strauss.
“Consistent with research conducted among both male and female adults with diabetes, the 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.”
Strauss and colleagues stressed that diabetes educators should be aware that some predictors of depression in women with diabetes vary from those in populations that include both sexes.
“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,” Strauss added.
“Depression screening, although important for all women with diabetes, should especially be performed among women with female-specific depression predictors.”
The study was published in The Diabetes Educator.

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