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Depression Boosts Heart Failure Risk After Heart Disease

Last Updated: April 16, 2009.

Patients with coronary artery disease who are depressed are more likely to have heart failure, even if they take antidepressants, according to a study in the April 21 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

THURSDAY, April 16 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with coronary artery disease who are depressed are more likely to have heart failure, even if they take antidepressants, according to a study in the April 21 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Heidi T. May, Ph.D., from the Intermountain Medical Center in Murray, Utah, and colleagues examined the association between depression and the risk of heart failure in 13,708 patients with coronary artery disease without heart failure or depression.

The researchers found that 10 percent of patients were later diagnosed with depression. The risk of heart failure incidence was significantly higher in patients with depression (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.50). The risk of depression compared with no depression was similar for the 7,719 patients with available medication records (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.68 versus 2.00 for no antidepressants versus antidepressants, respectively). The use of antidepressants had no significant effect on depressed patients (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.84 for no medication versus medication), the authors note.

"Depression diagnosis was shown to be associated with an increased incidence of heart failure after coronary artery disease diagnosis, regardless of antidepressant medication treatment," May and colleagues conclude.

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