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Cardiology Research and Practice
Volume 2012, Article ID 524325, 9 pages
Review Article

Does Depression Impact Cognitive Impairment in Patients with Heart Failure?

1Population Health Research Institute, Hamilton, ON, Canada L8L 2X2
2Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada L8S 4L8

Received 17 March 2012; Revised 29 May 2012; Accepted 3 June 2012

Academic Editor: Gregory Giamouzis

Copyright © 2012 Z. N. Sohani and Z. Samaan. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Prevalence studies have noted the cooccurrence of cognitive decline and depression in persons with heart failure. Cognitive impairment is associated with significant mortality and deteriorated quality of life, likely due to impairments in memory and executive function, which impact a patient’s ability to understand and comply with prescribed treatment plans. This is especially true in complex diseases such as heart failure. Evidence from literature supports the possibility of a pathophysiological relationship between cognitive impairment, depression, and heart failure. Yet, very few studies have sought to investigate this relationship. This paper reviews current literature on the association between depression and cognitive impairment in persons with heart failure and explores possible mechanisms explaining this complex triad.