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Depressive Symptoms in Substantially Functionally Impaired, Non-Demented, Elderly Heart Failure Patients

Bruce Friedman, PhD and Chunyu Li, MM. Department of Community and Preventive Medicine, University of Rochester, 601 Elmwood Avenue, Box 644, Rochester, NY 14642, 585-273-2425, Chunyu_Li@urmc.rochester.edu

Research has suggested that functional impairment may make important contributions to depression in heart failure (HF) patients. However, few studies have examined this issue in HF patients suffering from substantial functional impairment.

Methods: All patients in the Medicare Primary and Consumer-Directed Care Demonstration, a randomized controlled trial, were living in the community at baseline and were substantially functionally impaired (study entry criteria were that they need or receive help with at least 2 ADLs or 3 IADLs). During the baseline interview each non-demented patient was administered the 15-item Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS). A total of 272 non-demented patients reported HF. Their mean age was 79.0 years (range: 65-99), 73.9% were female, 40.4% had less than a high school education, and their mean GDS score was 4.45 (SD=2.91). We hypothesized that among substantially functionally impaired HF patients who are not demented, there would be a significant association between extent of functional impairment and depressive symptom severity. After conducting ANOVAs to identify important unadjusted associations between number of depressive symptoms (GDS score) and ADL and IADL functioning, HF severity, and a variety of other variables, we conducted OLS regression analyses.

Results: Disability in ADLs and IADLs were not independently associated with depressive symptom severity. Significant associations were found with chance health locus of control, poor social functioning, acute myocardial infarction, poor life satisfaction, and low self-efficacy.

Conclusion: In non-demented elderly HF patients with significant ADL and/or IADL impairment, other variables but not ADL or IADL disability are associated with depressive symptom severity.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, the participant in this session will be able to

Keywords: Depression, Heart Disease

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Innovations in Long-term Care

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA