Aim: To determine the association of neuropathy and other complications with emotional distress and depression among patients with longstanding type 1 diabetes (T1DM).
Methods: Canadians with ≥50years of T1DM completed a questionnaire including assessment of distress and depression by the Problem Areas in Diabetes Scale (PAID) and Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS), respectively. Complications were determined using the Michigan Neuropathy Screening Instrument (Questionnaire Component), fundoscopy reports, renal function tests, and self-reported peripheral-(PVD) and cardiovascular (CVD) disease. Associations were analyzed by Poisson regression.
Results: Among 323 participants, 137 (42.4%) had neuropathy, 113 (36.5%) nephropathy, 207 (69.5%) retinopathy, 95 (29.4%) CVD, and 31 (9.8%) PVD. The neuropathy subgroup had higher prevalence of distress (13 (9.5%) vs. 6 (3.3%), p=0.029) and depression (34 (24.9%) vs. 12 (6.5%), p<0.001). Adjusting for diabetes complications, neuropathy was associated with higher PAID (adjusted RR 1.44 (95% CI 1.14-1.82), p=0.003) and GDS scores (adjusted RR1.57 (1.18-2.11), p=0.002). Independent of potential confounders, neuropathy remained associated with higher PAID (adjusted RR 1.39 (1.10-1.76), p=0.006) and GDS scores (adjusted RR 1.37 (1.03-1.83), p=0.032). Associations with neuropathy were not fully explained by neuropathic pain.
Conclusion: Compared to other complications, neuropathy had the greatest association with distress and depression in longstanding T1DM, independent of pain. Strategies beyond pain management are needed to improve quality of life in diabetic neuropathy.
Keywords: Complications; Depression; Distress; Neuropathy; Psychology; Type 1 diabetes.
Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.