Examining Anxiety, Depression Rates in CTEPH, PAH

Depression, anxiety, and reduced healthcare-related quality of life are common in patients with either pulmonary arterial hypertension or chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension.

Patients with chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) may have higher rates of depression and lower mental health and mental component scores compared with patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), according to a study published in Lung.

Researchers performed a retrospective analysis of self-reported depression, anxiety, and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) scores in 93 patients with a confirmed diagnosis by right heart catheterization of either CTEPH (n=23) or PAH (n=70).

Study results showed overall reduction in HRQOL in both cohorts, with lower scores in patients diagnosed with CTEPH in almost all SF-36 parameters of the HRQOL questionnaire. In addition, a significant reduction was noted in patients with CTEPH for mental health (P =.006) and for the mental component summary score (P =.02). Depression was higher in patients with CTEPH (56.5%) compared with those with PAH (30%; P =.03) and correlated with the Borge Dyspnea Scale (r=.44; P =.01). However, no statistically significant difference in anxiety scores was found between the 2 groups.

Investigators concluded that patients with both CTEPH and PAH showed high rates of depression, anxiety, and reduced HRQOL, with patients with CTEPH demonstrating a significantly higher rate of depression compared with patients with PAH. On the basis of these findings, clinicians should consider the need for routine assessment, early detection (especially in patients with dyspnea), supportive therapy, and mental illness interventions for patients with CTEPH and PAH, in addition to routine care.

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Pfeuffer E, Krannich H, Halank M, et al. Anxiety, depression, and health-related QOL in patients diagnosed with PAH or CTEPH [published online October 9, 2017]. Lung. doi:10.1007/s00408-017-0052-z