Association of depression with subsequent mortality, cardiovascular morbidity and incident dementia in people aged 80 and over and suffering from hypertension. Data from the Hypertension in the Very Elderly Trial (HYVET)

Age Ageing. 2010 Jul;39(4):439-45. doi: 10.1093/ageing/afq042. Epub 2010 May 23.


Background: depression is common in elderly people and may be associated with increased cardiovascular risk and incident dementia.

Method: participants in the Hypertension in the Very Elderly Trial (HYVET) completed a depression screening instrument, the Geriatric Depression Score (GDS), at baseline and annually. We examined the association of GDS score with incident stroke, mortality and dementia using Cox proportional hazards models (hazard ratios, HR and 95% confidence intervals, CI) adjusted for treatment group and other potential confounders.

Results: 2,656 HYVET participants completed the GDS. The mean follow-up was 2.1 years. A GDS score > or =6 was associated with increased risks of all-cause (HR 1.8, 95% CI 1.4-2.3) and cardiovascular mortality (HR 2.10, 95% CI 1.5-3.0), all stroke (HR 1.8, 95% CI 1.2-2.8) and all cardiovascular events (HR 1.6, 95% CI 1.2-2.1). Risk of incident dementia also tended to be increased (HR 1.28, 95% CI 0.95-1.73). Each additional GDS point at baseline also gave rise to a significantly increased risk of fatal and non-fatal cardiovascular events, all-cause mortality and dementia.

Conclusion: there was a strong association between baseline depression scores and later fatal and non-fatal cardiovascular endpoints over a mean follow-up of 2 years in a hypertensive very elderly group. The mechanism of this association warrants further study.

Trial registration: NCT00122811.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / complications
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / drug therapy
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / mortality*
  • Dementia / epidemiology*
  • Dementia / etiology
  • Depression / epidemiology*
  • Depression / etiology
  • Female
  • Geriatric Assessment / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / drug therapy*
  • Indapamide / therapeutic use*
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Perindopril / therapeutic use
  • Risk Factors
  • Stroke / drug therapy
  • Stroke / mortality


  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • Indapamide
  • Perindopril

Associated data