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Depression more damaging for older men than women!

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Depression more damaging for older men than women


A new study has revealed that older men who develop depression have a higher mortality, but this is not the case with older women, according to report in Psychosomatic Medicine.


Researchers at the Australian National University, Canberra, looked at a group of nearly 2,000 people aged 70 or older, giving them a depression questionnaire on two occasions.


If they were depressed on the second occasion, but not the first, this was called "incident" depression, arising during the course of the study.


Those who were depressed the first, but not the second, time were said to have "remitted" depression. And those depressed on both occasions were said to have chronic depression, the researchers stated.


These distinctions turned to be important, for men with incident depression had a higher mortality rate than either women or men without depression. No such link was found for the other two kinds of depression.


The researchers feel that maybe a new episode of depression may signal the start of physical decline, which may lead to heart disease, cancer or other serious health problem. The fact that remitted depression is not linked to increased mortality suggests that treatment of depression (leading to remittance) in older men is very important.


Lifting depression could lead to a longer and healthier life, they conclude.

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