Determinants of depression and anxiety in family practice patients with comorbidities
AIM: To identify the prevalence of anxiety and depression in patients with chronic conditions in Slovenian family practices and to identify predictors for anxiety and depression.
METHODS: Self-administered questionnaires (Zung's self-rating depression scale and Zung's self-rating anxiety scale) in a sample of 800 consecutive family-practice patients. The main outcome measures were depression and anxiety scores in patients with various comorbidities.
RESULTS: A binary logistic regression model for the presence of depression showed that widowed/divorced status, elementary/vocational education, cardiac diseases, migraine and higher levels of chronic pain were independent predictors for the presence of depression. A binary logistic regression model for the presence of anxiety showed that female gender, lower income, cardiac diseases, osteoarthritis and rheumatologic diseases, and higher levels of chronic pain were independent predictors for with the presence of anxiety.
CONCLUSIONS: Family physicians should actively and routinely look for the presence of depression and anxiety among their patients, especially among women, patients with lower levels of education, widowed and divorced patients, patients with chronic pain, patients with cardiac and rheumatologic diseases, and patients with migraine. Family doctors should provide better analgesic treatment for patients with chronic pain in order to prevent the development of depression and anxiety.