Prevalence of depression after stroke: the Perth Community Stroke Study.
P W Burvill, G A Johnson, K D Jamrozik, C S Anderson, E G Stewart-Wynne, T M Chakera


BACKGROUND The Perth Community Stroke Study (PCSS) was a population-based study of the incidence, cause, and outcome of acute stroke.

METHOD Subjects from the study were assessed initially, by examination and interview, and at four- and 12-month follow-ups to determine differences in prevalence of depression between the sexes and between patients with first-ever and recurrent strokes.

RESULTS The prevalence of depressive illness four months after stroke in 294 patients from the PCSS was 23% (18-28%), 15% (11-19%) major depression and 8% (5-11%) minor depression. There were no significant differences between the sexes or between patients with first-ever and recurrent strokes. With a non-hierarchic approach to diagnosis of those with depression, 26% of men and 39% of women had an associated anxiety disorder, mainly agoraphobia. Nine per cent of male and 13% of female patients interviewed had evidence of depression at the time of the stroke. Twelve months after stroke 56% of the men were still depressed (40% major and 16% minor), as were 30% of the women (12% major and 18% minor).

CONCLUSION The prevalence of depression after stroke was comparable with that reported from other studies, and considerably less than that reported from in-patient and rehabilitation units.