DEPRESSION, WOMEN, AND HEART DISEASE
ANCHOR LEAD: YET ANOTHER STUDY LINKS DEPRESSION AND HEART DISEASE, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Depression and heart disease are inextricably linked, but studies to assess which came first are few. Rick Lange, chief of clinical cardiology at Johns Hopkins, says it really may not matter.
LANGE: The presence of depression, untreated, influences someone’s compliance with medications, and their compliance with following heart healthy things after the heart attack, and that is, do they take their pills as prescribed, do they see their physician afterwards, are they involved in regular exercise, cardiac rehab, are they eating healthy diets? And all these are influenced by the absence or presence of depression. :20
Yet the latest study concluded that the depression occurs first.
LANGE: We have this mistaken opinion that the heart attack caused it and they ought to just get over it, but in fact, depression a, was most likely to contribute to the heart attack, and b, it preceded it. And so we need to recognize it and treat it appropriately. :13
Lange says this is just one more reason for people to get treatment for depression if they think they may have it. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.