Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Late-Life Depression Often Comorbid With Dementia

The review indicated that depression late in life was associated with a significant increased risk of all-cause dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and vascular dementia, wrote Meryl Butters, Ph.D., of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, in the May British Journal of Psychiatry. And an analysis of five studies showed that the risk of vascular dementia was significantly higher than that for Alzheimer’s disease in depressed elderly patients.

“The prevention of depression along with stimulating general healthy behaviours and lifestyles, reduction of cardiovascular burden, and other mental health-related problems should be considered in public-health policies aiming at the prevention and/or delaying of the presentation of dementia syndromes in the older adult population,” wrote Butters and colleagues. Furthermore, they concluded, new clinical trials should look into the potential effects of preventing depression on the risk of cognitive impairment and dementia in older adults.

For more in Psychiatric News about depression in elderly individuals, click here. To read additional research on depression in the elderly, see the American Journal of Psychiatry here.

(Image: Yuri Arcurs/


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