Post-stroke depression: relationships to functional impairment, coping strategies, and rehabilitation outcome.
This study examined the phenomenon of post-stroke depression and evaluated its impact on rehabilitation outcome. Sixty-four patients presenting to a rehabilitation program within weeks of first stroke were evaluated for depression through self-report measures and staff ratings. Patients also rated the particular coping strategies which they used in dealing with their illness and hospital stay. Physical and occupational therapists provided measures of functional impairment at admission and discharge. A high (47%) prevalence of depression was found in this population, with no overall differences observed between patients with right or left hemisphere lesions. Depressed patients, in comparison to non-depressed, evidenced greater functional impairment at both admission and discharge. However, both groups showed similar gains over the course of rehabilitation. Coping strategies employed by depressed patients appeared to reflect a lower level of participation in the rehabilitation process. A subgroup of patients evaluated 6 weeks after discharge revealed that depression was associated with a worsening on one measure of functional status. These findings indicate that depression is a frequent companion of stroke, that it is associated with degree of functional impairment, and that it may exert a negative impact on the rehabilitation process and outcome.
- Copyright © 1986 by American Heart Association