International Psychogeriatrics

Studies on Affective Symptoms and Disorders

Depression in Persons With Dementia

Henry Brodaty a1 and Georgina Luscombe a1
a1 Academic Department of Psychogeriatrics, Prince Henry Hospital, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

Article author query
brodaty h   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
luscombe g   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 


The prevalence of depression in persons with dementia is controversial. Among 288 outpatients with dementia, a prevalence of 7.4% was found according to the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HRSD), 8.0% using the Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS), and 6.3% according to DSM-IV criteria. Rates and levels of depression tended to be higher in vascular than in Alzheimer's dementia according to the rating scales, but not according to the DSM-IV criteria. Greater cognitive impairment was associated with higher HRSD (but not GDS) scores. Cases of clinical depression did not persist over 12 months' follow-up. These results sugguest that clinically significant depression in dementia is less common than previously reported and tends to remit.