Psychological Medicine

Original Articles

Work stress, family stress and depression in professional and managerial employees

Jo Phelana1 c1, Joseph E. Schwartza1, Evelyn J. Brometa1, Mary A. Dewa1, David K. Parkinsona1, Herbert C. Schulberga1, Leslie O. Dunna1, Howard Blanea1 and E. Carroll Curtisa1

a1 Departments of Psychiatry and Preventive Medicine, State University of New York at Stony Brook; Departments of Psychiatry, Psychology and Epidemiology, University of Pittsburgh; and the Research Institute on Alcoholism, State University of New York at Buffalo, USA


Detailed interviews were conducted with 1523 married professional and managerial employees of a major US corporation to test associations of acute and chronic occupational and domestic stress with DSM-III-R major depression and current depressive symptoms. After controlling for demographic and clinical risk factors, both sources of stress were significantly associated with the two measures of depression. On the other hand, neither the demographic and clinical risk factors, nor several psychosocial characteristics (social support, sense of mastery and organizational commitment) moderated the relationship between stress and depression.


c1 Address for correspondence: Dr Jo Phelan, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, Putnam Hall – South Campus, SUNY Stony Brook, Stony Brook, New York 11794–8790, USA.