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Prevention of major depression in complex medically ill patients: preliminary results from a randomized, controlled trial.
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Publication types: Journal Article ; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't - Publication Status: ppublish
BACKGROUND: Depression is highly prevalent in patients with physical illness and is associated with a diminished quality of life and poorer medical outcomes. OBJECTIVE: The authors evaluated whether a multifaceted intervention conducted by a psychiatric consultation-liaison nurse could reduce the incidence of major depression in rheumatology inpatients and diabetes outpatients with a high level of case complexity. METHOD: Of 247 randomized patients, the authors identified 100 patients with a high level of case complexity at baseline and without major depression (65 rheumatology and 35 diabetes patients). Patients were randomized to usual care (N=53) or to a nurse-led intervention (N=47). Main outcomes were the incidence of major depression and severity of depressive symptoms during a 1-year follow-up, based on quarterly assessments with standardized psychiatric interviews. RESULTS: The incidence of major depression was 63% in usual-care patients and 36% in the intervention group. Effects of intervention on depressive symptoms were observed in outpatients with diabetes but not in rheumatology inpatients. CONCLUSION: These preliminary results based on subgroup analysis suggest that a multifaceted nurse-led intervention may prevent the occurrence of major depression in complex medically ill patients and reduce depressive symptoms in diabetes outpatients.
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