Depression and Diabetes - A Two-Way Street

06/30/2009 - News

Depression and Diabetes - A Two-Way Street

By: June Chen, MD

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Depressive symptoms have previously been associated with the development of type 2 diabetes. But, does it work the other way around as well? According to a study published in the June 18, 2008 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, patients with treated type 2 diabetes have an increased risk of developing depression . Likewise, patients with depression were found to have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes within a 3-year period.

 The authors of the study analyzed over 5000 individuals between the ages of 45 and 84 who did not have type 2 diabetes at baseline. They found that those individuals with depressive symptoms were significantly more likely to develop type 2 diabetes in the 3-year follow-up period. The authors also analyzed nearly 4900 individuals in the same age range who did not have depressive symptoms at baseline. They found that those individuals with type 2 diabetes were more likely to develop depressive symptoms in the 3-year follow-up period.

The authors suggested that patients with depressive symptoms were more likely to engage in adverse health behaviors, such as being overweight, being sedentary, and using tobacco, which might lead to the development of diabetes. Perhaps an important future target of diabetes prevention would focus on helping individuals with depression to modify these poor health behaviors.

Source

JAMA. 2008;299:2751-2759.

Created on: 06/25/2008
Reviewed on: 06/30/2009

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