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Curr Opin Pulm Med. 2008 Nov;14(6):582-8. doi: 10.1097/MCP.0b013e3283121cf1.

Prevalence and impact of depression in cystic fibrosis.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Miami, Miami, Florida 33146, USA.



Numerous studies have demonstrated that patients with chronic illnesses are at an increased risk for depression, with serious direct and indirect consequences for health outcomes. The few studies examining rates of depression in patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) or parent caregivers have found clinically significant elevations. Given the importance of identifying and treating symptoms of depression, the purpose of this review was to highlight recent data on the prevalence and impact of depression in CF patients and to propose recommendations for screening and treatment.


Recent studies in CF have revealed higher rates of depression in children, adolescents, adults, and parent caregivers than in healthy populations. Evidence also suggests that depression has negative effects on treatment adherence, family functioning, and health-related quality of life. Briefly, well validated screening tools for depression are available but are not currently utilized in routine CF care. Effective psychological and pharmacological interventions are available to treat depression, but have not yet been evaluated in patients with CF.


Depression is a significant risk factor for the effective management of CF. Screening and treatment of depression in CF centers is recommended and holds promise for improving social, emotional, and physical health outcomes.

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