(HealthDay News) — Evidence suggests that depression should be considered a risk factor for adverse outcomes in patients with acute coronary syndrome, according to a scientific statement from the American Heart Association published online February 24 in Circulation.

Judith H. Lichtman, PhD, MP., from Yale University in New Haven, Conn., and colleagues reviewed the available evidence to examine whether depression should be considered a risk factor for patients with acute coronary syndrome. A total of 53 individual studies and four meta-analyses met the inclusion criteria and were included in the review.

The researchers found that 32 of the individual studies reported on associations with all-cause mortality, 12 on cardiac mortality, and 22 on composite outcomes. Across the studies, considerable heterogeneity was seen with respect to the demographic composition of the samples, definitions and measures of depression, follow-up duration, and covariates included in multivariate analyses. There were generally consistent associations noted between depression and adverse outcomes, despite the limitations in individual studies.

“Despite the heterogeneity of published studies included in this review, the preponderance of evidence supports the recommendation that the American Heart Association should elevate depression to the status of a risk factor for adverse medical outcomes in patients with acute coronary syndrome,” the authors write.

Full Text