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Am J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2006 Dec;14(12):1060-8.

Disability and depression: investigating a complex relation using physical performance measures.

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1
Fukui Prefectural University, Fukui, Japan.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of this study was to examine the relation of physical performance measures with depressive symptoms in older men.

METHOD:

A cross-sectional, multivariate comparison of several measures of upper- and lower-extremity performance and their relation with depressive symptoms was performed in 2,856 older Japanese American men, aged 71-93 years, who participated in the fourth examination of the Honolulu Heart Program. Depressive symptoms were measured using an 11-item version of Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression (CES-D) Scale. A score of at least 9 (from a maximum score of 33) is considered clinically significant. Timed functional performance tests, including walking and repeated chair stands, were used to assess lower-extremity performance; handgrip strength was used as an indicator of upper-extremity performance.

RESULTS:

Two hundred eighty-three participants (9.9%) had a score of 9 or greater on the 11-question CES-D Scale and were considered to be at high risk for depression. Time to walk 10 feet and time to complete five chair stands were significantly longer in those with depressive symptoms, whereas handgrip strength was significantly lower. Only the association of gait speed (time to walk 10 feet) and depressive symptoms remained significant when all physical performance measures were simultaneously included in a multivariate analysis.

CONCLUSION:

These results demonstrate physical performance measures, particularly gait speed, may be important potential correlates of depression in community-dwelling older men.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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