To Fix Depression, Fix the Body as Well

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Depression often comes with poor health. For those who suffer from depression and diabetes mellitus, coronary heart disease or both, new research shows that collaborative care intervention can be particularly helpful for all the conditions.

The recommended intervention includes a team-centered care approach which resulted in an improvement in the number of depression-free days as well as quality-adjusted life-years.

“Patients with depression and poorly controlled diabetes mellitus, coronary heart disease (CHD) or both have higher medical complication rates and higher health care costs, suggesting that more effective care management of psychiatric and medical disease control might also reduce medical service use and enhance quality of life,” the researchers reported in the May issue of Archives of General Psychiatry.

A randomized controlled trial was conducted to examine a systematic intervention designed to enhance disease control of depression, systolic blood pressure, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and hemoglobin A1c in people suffering from depressive symptoms, diabetes mellitus or CHD, or both.

Those patients assigned to the intervention group received patient-centered, team based collaborative care that included nurse care managers who worked with the patients and their doctors to improve management of the illnesses.

During the first 12 months, researcher saw improved scores on all measurements of illness when compared to a control group. At 18 and 24 month follow ups, the depression scores stayed low although the differences in other scores had leveled out.

Researchers concluded that for patients with depression and those particular diseases, the program was a high value intervention which gave long term results for the depressive symptoms and improved quality of life.

Source: MedicalNewsToday, Archives of General Psychiatry


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