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Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 1997 Sep;12(9):955-9.

Screening for depression in low-vision elderly.

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1
Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To determine the sensitivity and specificity of the Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS) in older low-vision patients, and to compare GDS scores with the diagnosis of major depression in statistical models examining the interrelationships of vision, depression and disability.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional survey.

PARTICIPANTS:

Community-residing older persons attending the low-vision clinic of Wills Eye Hospital, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

MEASUREMENTS:

Geriatric Depression Scale, DSM-III-R Checklist for Depression, Community Disability Scale and Snellen Visual Acuity.

RESULTS:

The sensitivity and specificity of the GDS (GDS = 11) were 63% and 77%, respectively. A receiver operating characteristic curve showed that the GDS's ability to discriminate patients with and without major depression was no better than chance. Although the GDS was limited as a screen for major depression, it was useful in statistical models examining the interrelationships of vision, depression and disability.

CONCLUSION:

Depressive symptoms are common among elderly patients with impaired vision attending a low-vision clinic. Although the GDS is unable to discriminate patients with and without major depression in this population, it is valuable as a continuous measure of depressive symptomatology to examine the interrelationships of vision, depression and disability.

PMID:
9309476
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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