Examining Depression in Patients on Dialysis

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Treadwell, A.A. (2017). Examining depression in patients on dialysis. Nephrology Nursing Journal, 44(4), 295–307.

This study measured the prevalence of depression in 39 patients on hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis in two urban outpatient facilities in the southeastern United States. Additionally, it evaluated the number of patients who sought and scheduled a mental health evaluation after screening and education. The prevalence of mild to severely depressed individuals among participants in this study was 36%, affirming previous findings of depressive symptoms in the ESRD population. Results suggest that patients with ESRD are at a higher risk for depression than the general population. The effects of depression may exacerbate ESRD symptoms, affect treatment adherence, and increase hospitalizations and morbidity. It is likely that screening, diagnosing, and treating depression will be associated with improvement in quality and quantity of life. The practicality of using the screening procedure may improve the detection of depression in this population. However, only a fraction of identified patients in this study pursued further mental health evaluation within the 45-day period. Continued research is needed to identify barriers to seeking mental health consultation and treatment in this community.

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