Depression in people living with HIV/AIDS attending primary care and outpatient clinics.

Komiti A, Judd F, Grech P, Mijch A, Hoy J, Williams B, Street A, Lloyd JH.

Aust N Z J Psychiatry. 2003 Feb;37(1):70-7. doi: 10.1046/j.1440-1614.2003.01118.x.

OBJECTIVE: Our aim was to gain an estimate of the rate of depressive disorder in patients with HIV/AIDS attending general practice and to investigate factors associated with depression. A further objective was to determine the ability of non-mental health medical practitioners to detect depressive symptoms in their patients with HIV/AIDS. METHODS Participants comprised 322 persons living with HIV/AIDS ( (PLWHA); 13 females, 309 males; mean age 41.4, SD = 8.9) who were recruited from four general practice clinics specializing in HIV medicine and from an infectious diseases clinic. Medical, psychiatric and sociodemographic data were obtained. In addition, participants completed the Inventory to Diagnose Depression (IDD), a self-report measure to detect depression. RESULTS: Twenty-two per cent of the sample met criteria for a current Major Depressive Episode (DSM-IV defined) on the IDD. Overall, there was moderate agreement between treating doctors' diagnosis of depression and patients' self-report of depressive symptoms. A multivariate model indicated that being in a current relationship was associated with lowered odds of depression (OR = 0.43; CI = 0.23-0.81). The factors strongly associated with increased odds of depression were a past history of illicit drug use (OR = 2.98; CI = 1.60-5.54) and a diagnosis of 'stress' by treating doctors (OR = 5.65; CI = 2.50-12.77). HIV-related medical variables such as immune function, use of antiretro-viral medication and duration of HIV infection were not associated with depression. CONCLUSIONS: There was a high rate of self-reported depression in this group of PLWHA which was also recognized by treating clinicians. Being in a relationship appeared to afford protection against depression while having a history of illicit drug use and current 'stress' were highly associated with depression. Interestingly, HIV-related medical variables including laboratory markers of HIV disease, duration of illness and antiretroviral medication regimen were not related to depression.

PMID: 12534660

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.