To identify gender differences in the prevalence of depression in an open population of individuals aged 25-64 years and to evaluate its impact on the risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) in the population of Siberia.
A random representative sample of a 25-64-year-old Novosibirsk population (657 men and 689 women) was surveyed within the framework of the third screening of the WHO MONICA-psychosocial program in 1994. The screening program included sociodemographic data registration and depression detection. Over a 16-year study period, women had myocardial infarction (MI) in 15 cases and stroke in 35 cases and men had these conditions in 30 and 22 cases, respectively.
In the open 25-64-year-old population, depression was detected in 54.5% of the women and in 29% of the men; major depression was present in 11.8% of the women and 3.1% of the men (?2=66.724; ?=2; p=0.0001). The risk of MI in the depressed patients was higher in the women (hazard ratio (HR)=2.5) than in the men (HR=2); when social parameters and age are included in the model, only a trend towards the impact of depression on the risk of MI persisted in the women (HR=3.4; p>0.05) and the men were observed to have a 1.6-fold higher risk for MI. The greatest risk of MI was seen in the men (HR=6.8) and women (HR=6.3) at the age of 55-64 years, as well as in the men who had incomplete secondary or primary education (HR=3.2); in blue-collar workers (HR=6.7), in the men who were single (HR=3.6), divorced (HR=4.5), or widowed (HR=6). The risk of stroke in the depressed patients during a 16-year study period was greater in the men (HR=5.8) than in the women (HR=4.6); after adjusting for age and social gradient, the risk of stroke in the women was higher in both the population and those who were aged 55-64 years (HR=8.5 and 6.9, respectively) than that in the men (HR=4.2 and 3.1, respectively). Among the men, the risk of stroke was higher in those who had primary education (HR=8.8), were widowed (HR=8.4) or divorced (HR=2.7).
The women are much more susceptible to depression than are the men. The risk of MI with depression is higher in the women than in the men; at the same time, the risk of stroke is higher in the men than in the women. The picture is opposite in the older age group. The risk of CVD in the depressed men is exacerbated by a social gradient; these relationships have not been revealed in the women.