Madison
51° F
Overcast
Overcast
Advertisement

Depression may increase arthritis pain

Published On: May 07 2013 03:28:15 PM CDT
Updated On: May 20 2013 02:20:41 PM CDT
Depression

blackie/iStock

According to a new study published in the American Journal of Public Health, suicide is now the leading cause of injury-related deaths in America.

By Pure Matters

South Korean researchers used X-rays to assess the severity of knee osteoarthritis in 660 men and women, aged 65 and older. The patients were also evaluated for the severity of their symptoms and for depression.

As expected, levels of pain were higher in patients whose X-rays showed greater joint damage. However, the researchers also found that depression was associated with an increase in pain in patients with mild to moderate knee osteoarthritis, even when significant joint damage was not evident in the X-ray image.

The findings are published in the March 16 issue of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery.

"Knee osteoarthritis is a common cause of pain and impairment in older adults. Often, the level of arthritic symptoms reported by patients is much more severe than what is represented by X-rays, which can make it difficult for the doctor to treat," study author Dr. Tae Kyun Kim, director of the division of knee surgery and sports medicine at Seoul National University Bundang Hospital's Joint Reconstruction Center, said in a journal news release.

"The results of this study indicate that depression can play a major role in the way patients experience the symptoms of knee arthritis, and that even when X-rays show the arthritis is not severe, patients with depression may report significant pain," Kim said.

"The relationship between pain and depression suggests that both should be considered by physicians when treating patients with knee osteoarthritis, particularly in those with X-rays not indicating severe damage to the joint," Kim added.

Kim also noted that some patients with knee osteoarthritis still experience pain and impaired movement after undergoing knee replacement surgery.

"Sometimes pain and disability after surgery is medically unexplained, so in these patients screening for depression might be a very good option," Kim suggested.

According to the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health, depression often goes undiagnosed in the elderly.

More information

The Arthritis Foundation has more about osteoarthritis.

Source: http://resources.purematters.com/healthy-mind/depression/depression-may-boost-arthritis-pain

Advertisement
  • Scotland independence crowd

    REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

    Celebs react to Scotland's independence vote

    On September 18, Scots will go to the polls to vote on the future of their country. The outcome could end Scotland's 307-year union with England and Wales as Great Britain -- and see it launch into the world as an independent nation of some 5.3 million people. Take a look at celebrity (both Scottish and not) reactions to the referendum.

  • Roger Goodell

    CNN

    The world reacts to NFL abuse scandals

    The NFL has suffered extensive backlash in their handling of both the Ray Rice domestic abuse and Adrian Peterson child abuse cases. Take a look at reactions to the recent NFL abuse scandals.

  • Police lights file 2

    Ridiculous 911 calls

    Have you ever considered calling 911 because of a massive spider in your house? How about because a McDonald's employee got your order wrong? Take a look at some of the strangest reasons people have recently called 911.

Advertisement