Personality predicts recurrence of late-life depression.

B. Steunenberg, A.T.F. Beekman, D.J.H. Deeg, A.J.F.M. Kerkhof

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Objective: To examine the association of personality with recurrence of depression in later life. Method: A subsample of 91 subjects from the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam (LASA; baseline sample size n = 3107; aged ≥ 55 years) depressed at baseline, who had recovered in the course of three years (first follow-up cycle) was identified. 41 (45%) respondents experienced a recurrence during the subsequent six years. The influences of personality and late life stress (demographic factors, health and social factors) on recurrence were investigated prospectively. Results: Recurrence of depression was associated with a high level of neuroticism and low level of mastery, residual depressive symptoms at time of recovery, female gender, pain complaints and feelings of loneliness. In multivariable analysis entering all predictors significant in single variable analysis, residual depressive symptoms and lack of mastery remained significantly associated with recurrence. Conclusion: In predicting the recurrence of depression in later life, the direct effects of personality remain important and comparable in strength with other late life stressors related to recurrence. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)164-172
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of affective disorders
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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