A 13-year prospective cohort study on the effects of aging and frailty on the depression-pain relationship in older adults

J.B. Sanders, H.C. Comijs, M.A. Bremmer, D.J.H. Deeg, A.T. Beekman

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Objectives The primary aim of the study is to investigate the effect of age and aging on the association between pain and depression over 13-years. We hypothesized that (1) this association would become stronger with age and frailty and that (2) this association is mainly driven by somatic and psychological factors. Methods Data were derived from the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam, a prospective population-based cohort study with four follow-up measurements over 13-years, consisting of 1528 respondents (mean age 67.9-±-8.1). Depressive symptoms were measured using the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale; pain was measured with an adapted version of the Nottingham Health Profile. Follow-up time and age were used as proxy variables for aging and gait speed as frailty marker. Cognition, mastery and neuroticism were measured using the mini mental state examination, the Pearlin Mastery Scale and the Dutch Personality Questionnaire respectively. Results Linear mixed models showed that pain and depressive symptoms were associated over the 13-year follow-up: b-=-0.095, p-<-0.001. Neither aging nor frailty changed this association. Measured somatic and psychological characteristics explained 40% of the covariance between pain and depressive symptoms over time. Discussion When dealing with people suffering from pain and depression, interventions should be similar for all aged people, encompassing both somatic and psychological factors, irrespective of age or frailty status.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)751-757
JournalInternational journal of geriatric psychiatry
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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