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ISRN Rheumatology
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 968343, 7 pages
Research Article

Assessing Depression among Older Persons with Arthritis: A Nationwide Health Status Survey

1Department of Pharmacy Administration, College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, St. John’s University, 8000 Utopia Parkway, Jamaica, NY 11439, USA
2Department of Pharmacy Practice, College of Pharmacy, Purdue University, 575 Stadium Mall Drive, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA

Received 23 May 2013; Accepted 28 June 2013

Academic Editors: C. Chizzolini, B. A. Eberhard, D. Merlotti, and D. A. Stetler

Copyright © 2013 Rajesh Nayak and Jigar Rajpura. 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.


Objectives. This study aimed to assess the health status of a nationwide sample of elderly persons having arthritis and determine the prevalence of depressive symptomatology in this population. Methods. WebTV technology was utilized to administer health status and depression surveys to a nationally representative sample of 550 randomly selected older persons. Predetermined cutoff scores on Short Form-36 (SF-36) scale and Center for Epidemiological Scale for Depression (CES-D) were used to identify individuals with depressive mood. Results. Sixteen percent ( ) of the respondents were found to be at risk for depression. Key associations among health domains of SF-36 and CES-D variables were statistically significant and were in the expected direction. Discussion. The risk of depression among older adults who have arthritis is moderate. A significant decline in multiple domains of health of older persons is likely when depression coexists with arthritis. Early screening for depressive symptomatology and prompt treatment should be an essential part of arthritis management in primary care practice.