Somatic Symptoms of Depression and Anxiety: A population based study
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Somatization, depression and anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorders in primary care. Even though the association between these disorders has been thoroughly studied, the relationship between specific somatic symptoms and depression and anxiety disorders is still unclear. The objective of this study was to identify which specific somatic symptoms that are most strongly associated with depression and anxiety and to what extent these somatic symptoms can indicate depression and anxiety disorders. Data from 3223 participants (1809 women and 1414 men) from The Västerbotten Environmental Health Study was used. The instruments used were the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale and the Patient Health Questionnaire 15-Item Somatic Symptom Severity Scale. The somatic symptoms that were most strongly associated with depression were feeling tired or having low energy; trouble sleeping; stomach pain; nausea, gas or indigestion; and constipation, loose bowels, or diarrhea. The somatic symptoms that were most strongly associated with anxiety disorders were feeling tired or having low energy; trouble sleeping; stomach pain; nausea, gas or indigestion; and headaches. Each of these somatic symptoms was associated with greater risk for either depression or anxiety disorders. The results support earlier research that has proposed an association between somatization and depression as well as anxiety disorders. When loss of energy, sleeping problems, gastrointestinal problems and headaches are present the risk of depression and anxiety disorders increases. It is important for primary care clinicians to be aware of these somatic symptoms when they are presented by patients, as they may indicate depression or anxiety disorders.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 18 p.
Somatization, depression, anxiety disorders, PHQ-15, HADS
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-115252OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-115252DiVA: diva2:899692
Subject / course
Examensarbete i psykologi
Study Programme for University Diploma in Psychology