Determinants of Depressive Symptoms at 1 Year Following ICU Discharge in Survivors of ≥ 7 Days of Mechanical Ventilation
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BACKGROUND: Moderate to severe depressive symptoms occur in up to one-third of patients at 1 year following ICU discharge, negatively affecting patient outcomes. This study evaluated patient and caregiver factors associated with the development of these symptoms. METHODS: This study used the Rehabilitation and Recovery in Patients after Critical Illness and Their Family Caregivers (RECOVER) Program (Phase 1) cohort of 391 patients from 10 medical/surgical university-affiliated ICUs across Canada. We determined the association between patient depressive symptoms (captured by using the Beck Depression Inventory II [BDI-II]), patient characteristics (age, sex, socioeconomic status, Charlson score, and ICU length of stay [LOS]), functional independence measure (FIM) motor subscale score, and caregiver characteristics (Caregiver Assistance Scale and Center for Epidemiologic Studies-Depression Scale) by using linear mixed models at time points 3, 6, and 12 months. RESULTS: BDI-II data were available for 246 patients. Median age at ICU admission was 56 years (interquartile range, 45-65 years), 143 (58%) were male, and median ICU LOS was 19 days (interquartile range, 13-32 days). During the 12-month follow-up, 67 of 246 (27.2%) patients had a BDI-II score ≥ 20, indicating moderate to severe depressive symptoms. Mixed models showed worse depressive symptoms in patients with lower FIM motor subscale scores (1.1 BDI-II points per 10 FIM points), lower income status (by 3.7 BDI-II points; P = .007), and incomplete secondary education (by 3.8 BDI-II points; P = .009); a curvilinear relation with age (P = .001) was also reported, with highest BDI-II at ages 45 to 50 years. No associations were found between patient BDI-II and comorbidities (P = .92), sex (P = .25), ICU LOS (P = .51), or caregiver variables (Caregiver Assistance Scale [P = .28] and Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale [P = .74]). CONCLUSIONS: Increased functional dependence, lower income, and lower education are associated with increased severity of post-ICU depressive symptoms, whereas age has a curvilinear relation with symptom severity. Knowledge of risk factors may inform surveillance and targeted mental health follow-up. Early mobilization and rehabilitation aiming to improve function may serve to modify mood disorders.