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Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2012 Mar-Apr;34(2):127-38. doi: 10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2011.11.009. Epub 2012 Jan 14.

Onset and risk factors for anxiety and depression during the first 2 years after lung transplantation.

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Department of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA.



Anxiety disorders are prominent in chronic lung disease; lung transplant recipients may therefore also be at high risk for these disorders. We sought to provide the first prospective data on rates and risk factors for anxiety disorders as well as depressive disorders during the first 2 years after transplantation.


A total of 178 lung recipients and a comparison group (126 heart recipients) received psychosocial and Structured Clinical Interview for Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition assessments at 2, 7, 12, 18 and 24 months posttransplant. Survival analysis determined onset rates and risk factors.


The panic disorder rate was higher (P<.05) in lung than heart recipients (18% vs. 8%). Lung and heart recipients did not differ on rates of transplant-related posttraumatic stress disorder (15% vs. 14%), generalized anxiety disorder (4% vs. 3%) or major depression (30% vs. 26%). Risk factors for disorders included pretransplant psychiatric history, female gender, longer wait for transplant, and early posttransplant health problems and psychosocial characteristics (e.g., poorer caregiver support and use of avoidant coping).


Heightened vigilance for panic disorder in lung recipients and major depression in all cardiothoracic recipients is warranted. Strategies to prevent psychiatric disorder should target recipients based not only on pretransplant characteristics but on early posttransplant characteristics as well.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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