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Anxious depression among Puerto Rican and African-American older adults

TitleAnxious depression among Puerto Rican and African-American older adults
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsDiefenbach, GJ, Disch, WB, Robison, JT, Baez, E, Coman, E
JournalAging Ment HealthAging Ment Health
Date PublishedJan
ISBN Number1364-6915 (Electronic)<br/>1360-7863 (Linking)
Accession Number19197697
KeywordsAfrican Americans/ psychology, Aged, Aged, 80 and Over, Analysis of Variance, Anxiety/complications/ ethnology/ psychology, Connecticut/epidemiology, Cross-Cultural Comparison, Depressive Disorder, Major/complications/ ethnology/ psychology, Female, Health Status, Hispanic Americans/ psychology, Humans, Interview, Psychological, Interviews as Topic, Male, Middle Aged, Prevalence, Puerto Rico/ethnology, Religion
AbstractOBJECTIVES: To determine racial/ethnic differences in the prevalence and impact of anxious depression (i.e. major depressive disorder, MDD, occurring concomitant with generalized anxiety symptoms) among older adults. METHOD: Interviews were conducted with 218 Puerto Rican and 206 African American older (age > or =60) urban senior housing residents. Data were collected on diagnostic status, depression severity and psychosocial functioning. RESULTS: Results indicated a higher prevalence of MDD and anxious depression among Puerto Rican participants. Anxious depression was associated with more severe ratings of distress and suicidality compared with MDD alone, and the impact of depression and anxiety was most pronounced for the Puerto Rican participants. Puerto Rican participants also reported poorer subjective health and more substantial disability; however, these effects were independent of depression or anxiety status. CONCLUSIONS: Anxious depression is common among older ethnic minority adults and the impact of these symptoms differs by race/ethnicity. These results highlight the importance of conducting culturally sensitive assessments of depression and anxiety among older adults.