Patterns of depressive symptoms identified in breast cancer patients


Nearly a third of women with breast cancer experience temporary or long-lasting depressive symptoms during and after treatment, according to a study published online April 14 in Open JAMA Network.

Cécile Charles, Ph.D., of the Institut Bergonié in Bordeaux, France, and her colleagues examined longitudinal patterns of depressive symptoms in patients with breast cancer, from diagnosis to three years after treatment. The analysis included 4,803 women.

The researchers identified six groups of trajectories characterizing the heterogeneity of depressive symptoms: non-cases with no expression of symptoms (54.8%); intermediate worsening (22.4%); intermediate improvement (10.0%); remission (5.4%); delayed onset (4.2%); and stable depression (3.2%). There was a consistent association between Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale scores at diagnosis and five depressive trajectory group affiliations, with an estimated higher probability per point increase of experiencing symptoms. subthreshold depressive or clinically significant. Differences in demographic, socioeconomic, clinical, and lifestyle factors were observed among trajectory groups.

“The results of this study suggest that the characterization of depressive trajectory clusters after breast cancer diagnosis requires further validation, but is a key step towards personalized management of patients at risk for depression, a common comorbidity in the breast cancer associated with a worse prognosis,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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