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Free Content Depression and risk of tuberculosis: a nationwide population-based cohort study

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BACKGROUND: Studies on the association between depression and risk of tuberculosis (TB) are lacking.

OBJECTIVE: To determine the association between depression and risk of TB.

METHODS: From a nationwide database, patients with depression were identified to form the exposure cohort between 2003 and 2013. The control cohort comprised an equivalent number of subjects without any mood disorders, with each subject age- and sex-matched to a patient in the exposure cohort. The incidence of TB was identified in the exposure cohort and control cohort between 2003 and 2013. A multivariable Cox proportional hazards model was used to estimate the association between depression and the subsequent risk of TB.

RESULTS: A total of 32 372 patients with depression and the same number of controls were identified. The risk of TB in the depression cohort was 2.63-fold (95%CI 1.74–3.96) higher than in the control cohort. When the depression was classified as ‘mild' and ‘severe', the risk of TB was proportional to depression severity.

CONCLUSIONS: Patients with depression are at a higher risk for TB, and a dose-response relationship exists between depression and the subsequent risk of TB.
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Keywords: cohort study; depression; risk of TB

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Korean Institute of Tuberculosis, Cheongju, Graduate School of Public Health, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea 2: Korean Institute of Tuberculosis, Cheongju 3: Graduate School of Public Health, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea

Publication date: July 1, 2017

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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