Understanding Depression in Kidney Disease

Dr Shock
July 8, 2007


Nearly 30 million Americans suffer from some form of depression. Many people with depression do not seek help, even though most of those with severe cases can be helped. Kidney disease patients are at an increased risk of suffering from depression. Understanding Depression in Kidney Disease and When Your Loved One is Depressed, gives readers an understanding of what depression is, what may cause it and how it is treated.

The American Association of Kidney Patients (AAKP)has published a brochure in the AAKP Understanding series. To download an electronic copy of this brochure, please visit the AAKP site.
It is an excellent brochure with an accurate account of what a depression is and how it is treated. Different treatment options are explained.
It is stated on this website that kidney disease patients are at an increased risk of suffering from depression. Since we did some research about depression and chronic inflammatory liver disease I am a little reluctant about scattering around this diagnoses. Would need to do a thorough literature search before answering this important question. With patients with liver disease a high prevalence of depression was only found by using a depression severity scale. Using severity scales to screen for depressive disorders in chronic somatic patients yields a prevalence that is too high. With a structured psychiatric interview prevalence is usually less and comparable with the prevalence in the general population for patients with a chronic inflammatory liver disease. It is possible that patients with a chronic somatic illness have some features of a depressive disorder, but lack all the features required for the DSM-IV diagnosis.
In conclusion patients with chronic somatic illness can have “psychiatric complaints” sometimes due to a psychiatric disease but most of the times due to their somatic illness.

 

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