Objective: Urticaria is a common ailment in adolescents. Its symptoms (e.g., unusual looking rash, limited daily activities, and recurrent itching) might contribute to the development of depression in adolescents, but this potential link has not been well studied. This study aimed to firstly investigate the risk of depression after urticaria using a nationwide population-based study. Methods: This study used the Taiwan Longitudinal Health Insurance Database. A total of 5,755 adolescents (aged 13 to 18 years) hospitalized for a first-attack urticaria episode from 2005 to 2009 were recruited as a study group, together with 17,265 matched non-urticaria enrollees as a control group. Patients who had histories of urticaria or depression before the study period were not included. Each patient was prospectively traced for one year to identify the occurrence of depression. Cox proportional hazards models were generated to compute the risk of depression between the study and control groups, making adjustments for the subjects' place of residence and sociodemographic characteristics. Depression-free survival curves were also analyzed. Finally, the risks of depression were analyzed between different age groups. Results: Thirty-four (0.6%) adolescents with urticaria and 59 (0.3%) non-urticarial control subjects suffered a new-onset episode of depression during this period. The stratified Cox proportional analysis showed that the crude hazard ratio of depression among adolescents with urticaria was 1.73 times (95% CI, 1.13-2.64) that of the control subjects without urticaria. Patients who aged 16 to 18 years, with history of asthma were more likely to suffer from depression (both p Conclusion: Individuals who have a first-attack of urticaria during adolescence are at high risk of developing depression.
Wei-yuan Lei, Changhua Christian Hospital, Taiwan
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