Turkish Journal of Geriatrics 2013 , Vol 16, Issue 1
Can AKTAŞ1, Şevki Hakan EREN2, İlhan KORKMAZ2, Hacı Mehmet ÇALIŞKAN3, Özgür KARCIOĞLU4, Sezgin SARIKAYA1
1Yeditepe Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi Acil Tıp Anabilim Dalı İSTANBUL
2Cumhuriyet Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi Acil Tıp Anabilim Dalı SİVAS
3Yozgat Devlet Hastanesi Acil Tıp Kliniği YOZGAT
4Acıbadem Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi Acil Tıp Anabilim Dalı İSTANBUL
Introduction: To investigate the prevalence and characteristics of depression in geriatric patients admitted to the emergency department (ED), and to determine the factors concerning depression.

Materials and Method: This prospective study was carried out on 512 consecutive elderly patients over or equal to 65 years of age referred to EDs of three different centers during the six-month study period. The Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS) was used for the recognition of depression. Sociodemographic data and information needed to highlight depression status were collected via datasheets prepared for the study.

Results: Scores obtained from GDS were assigned into groups regarding severity of illness: 35.3% of the patients (n=181) were found normal, 48.4% of the patients (n=248) were interpreted as mildly depressed and severe depression was considered in 16.2% of the patients (n=81). Mean GDS score determined in the normal patient group is 5.6±2.4 (range: 0 and 9). Mean scores of the mildly depressive patients were found to be 14.7±2.4 (range:10 and 26) while those of the severely depressed patients were found as 23.5±2.2 (range: 20 and 28). A significant relationship was determined between depression, and chronic disease, frequency of ED visit and psychiatric treatments.

Conclusion: Depression in the elderly with underlying comorbid illnesses becomes more complex to recognize and treat. Depressive symptoms of patients are attributed to patients' current diseases and depression is often unnoticed. Keywords : Aged; Depression; Geriatrics; Emergencies