An efficient screening tool for preoperative depression: the Geriatric Depression Scale-Short Form.
BACKGROUND: Depression is highly prevalent in patients before surgery, and it has been widely shown to have a serious impact on their postoperative outcomes. It would therefore be desirable for physicians to obtain a quick, simple screen to evaluate depression to consider treatment of symptomatology and potentially optimize postoperative outcomes. METHODS: In this study, we investigated the prevalence of depression in a presurgical inpatient sample undergoing major, noncardiac surgery. In addition, we sought to establish the Geriatric Depression Scale-Short Form (GDS-SF) as a valid screening tool for depression by examining its relationship to the Beck Depression inventory (BDI) by age and gender. RESULTS: In our sample of 1043 presurgical candidates, prevalence of depression as established by the BDI was significantly higher than rates consistently found in healthy community samples. Depression was more common in women than in men (P = 0.02), and depression rates were lower in elders relative to middle-aged and younger groups (P = 0.003 and 0.003, respectively). In addition, we found that there was a high correlation between the BDI and the GDS-SF within each of the age groups. CONCLUSIONS: These data further support the need for depression screens in presurgical populations and establish the validity of the GDS-SF as a valid quick assessment alternative available to physicians.
Bass, DS; Attix, DK; Phillips-Bute, B; Monk, TG
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