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SeoYeon Hwang 1 Article
Gender differences in the association between multimorbidity and depression in older Korean adults: an analysis of data from the National Survey of Older Koreans (2011-2017)
SeoYeon Hwang, Jin Young Nam, Jeong Hyun Ahn, Soojin Park
Epidemiol Health. 2022;44:e2022049.   Published online May 24, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2022049
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AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
Previous studies have shown that people with multimorbidity have a higher risk of depression than those without multimorbidity. However, few studies have examined the association between depression and multimorbidity in men and women separately. Since the rates of depression and multimorbidity are different in men and women, it is necessary to examine whether gender differences affect their association.
METHODS
This study included 30,138 participants (aged ≥ 65 years) from the National Survey of Older Koreans (2011-2017). Depression was defined using the Korean version of the Geriatric Depression Scale (SGDS-K). Multimorbidity was defined as people who had 2 or more chronic diseases, including arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, pulmonary disease, cancer, stroke, or osteoporosis. Multiple logistic regression analysis was performed to determine the association between depression and multimorbidity.
RESULTS
In total, 22.2% and 30.7% of men and women, respectively, had depression. Those with multimorbidity had a higher risk of depression than those without chronic conditions; specifically, the difference in risk among men was greater than that among women. Age was considered a moderator for women. While the effects of pulmonary disease, stroke, and cancer were especially substantial in the integrated analysis, gender differences were observed related to various chronic conditions comorbid with heart disease.
CONCLUSIONS
There are gender differences in the association between multimorbidity and depression among older Korean adults. Therefore, gender-specific care should be provided to reduce depression in older adults with multimorbidity.
Summary
Korean summary
복합만성질환을 가진 남성 노인이 복합만성질환을 가진 여성 노인보다 우울증을 경험할 위험이 높았다. 특히 심장질환을 가진 남성 노인과 여성 노인은 심장질환을 포함한 만성질환의 개수에 따라 우울증 위험에 차이가 있었다. 노인들의 수명 향상을 위해 성별 차이를 고려한 치료 방안과 정책이 마련되어야 한다.
Key Message
Multimorbidity was associated with a high-risk of depression in older Korean adults and the effects of multimorbidity differed by gender.

Epidemiol Health : Epidemiology and Health