Depressive Symptoms and Complications Early after Acute Myocardial Infarction: Gender Differences

The Open Nursing Journal 17 Sept 2018 RESEARCH ARTICLE DOI: 10.2174/1874434601812010205



Cardiovascular disease is the first leading cause of death worldwide. Coronary heart disease is the most common manifestation of cardiovascular disease. Acute myocardial infarction is the primary manifestation of coronary heart disease. Depression is a common and predicted complication after acute myocardial infarction. Limited studies evaluated gender differences in depressive symptoms after acute myocardial infarction especially in developing countries.


The study aimed to determine whether there was a difference in depression levels and rate of complications based on gender early after acute myocardial infarction.


This was a prospective comparative study on 230 patients (150 men and 80 women) with a confirmed diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction. All participants signed an informed consent, filled sociodemographic and clinical questionnaire and the Depression Subscale of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. Clinical data were abstracted from the participants’ medical record after discharge.


Eighty-six participants (37.4%), 54 men and 32 women, developed 1 or more complications during hospitalization. Female patients were more depressed (14.4±3.5 vs. 8.3 ± 2.6) and developed more complications (1.9 ± 0.9 vs. 0.8 ± 0.5) than male patients did. Depressive symptoms increased the occurrence of complication by 40% and 33% for female and male patients respectively after controlling for sociodemographic and clinical variables.


Depressive symptoms independently predicted complications after acute myocardial infarction in both men and women. The inclusion of depression assessment tools in acute myocardial infarction treatment protocols is highly recommended.

Keywords: Depressive symptoms, Acute myocardial infarction, Complication, Developing countries, Coronary Heart Disease (CHD), CVD.
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