A Comparison of the Use of Antidepressant Treatment Between Non-Hispanic Black and White and Mexican American Adults With Type 2 Diabetes in the United States: NHANES 2005-2012

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The purpose of this study was to determine antidepressant use among Mexican Americans (MA) and non-Hispanic (NH) blacks and whites with type 2 diabetes and depressive symptoms.


A secondary data analysis based on National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2005-2012 cohort data included 560 noninstitutionalized civilian MA, NH black, and NH white adults with type 2 diabetes and depressive symptoms. Unadjusted and adjusted 2-way ANOVA models evaluated whether there was a difference in the use of antidepressants by depressive symptom level across race/ethnic group.


Whites were more likely than blacks and MA to be on antidepressant treatment (whites: 41.7%, blacks: 27.1%, MA: 24.2%) and on serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRI) (whites: 8.1%, blacks: 2.9%, MA: 2.4%). However, there was no difference in the use of other drug classes or antidepressant use by depressive symptom level across racial/ethnic group. Followed by tricyclic antidepressants (TCA), selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) were the most commonly used drug class overall. Approximately 30% of subjects were on antidepressants and among those, 80% were on one antidepressant, all others on 2 or more.


Racial/ethnic differences were observed in the use of antidepressant treatment but not when depressive symptom levels were incorporated in the analyses. Further studies on the effectiveness of different antidepressants in diabetes outcomes minorities are needed.

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