Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa
  • Get access
    Check if you have access via personal or institutional login
  • Cited by 34
  • Cited by
    This article has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Pitman, Alexandra L Osborn, David P J Rantell, Khadija and King, Michael B 2016. Bereavement by suicide as a risk factor for suicide attempt: a cross-sectional national UK-wide study of 3432 young bereaved adults. BMJ Open, Vol. 6, Issue. 1, p. e009948.

    Burr, Hermann Rauch, Angela Rose, Uwe Tisch, Anita and Tophoven, Silke 2015. Employment status, working conditions and depressive symptoms among German employees born in 1959 and 1965. International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, Vol. 88, Issue. 6, p. 731.

    Kang, Sang-Yun Cho, Young Hye Jeong, Dong-Wook Lee, Sang-Yeoup Kim, Yun Jin Lee, Jeong Gyu and Lim, Hyun-Ju 2015. Association between Secondhand Smoke and Health-related Quality of Life in Middle-aged Korean Adults. Korean Journal of Health Promotion, Vol. 15, Issue. 4, p. 185.

    Santos, Sara Campos, Rui C. and Tavares, Sofia 2015. Suicidal Ideation and Distress in Family Members Bereaved by Suicide in Portugal. Death Studies, Vol. 39, Issue. 6, p. 332.

    Santos, Sara Tavares, Sofia and Campos, Rui C. 2015. Distress in Portuguese Family Members Bereaved by Suicide: An Exploratory Study. Journal of Loss and Trauma, Vol. 20, Issue. 3, p. 267.

    Shishkina, Galina T. Bulygina, Veta V. and Dygalo, Nikolay N. 2015. Behavioral effects of glucocorticoids during the first exposures to the forced swim stress. Psychopharmacology, Vol. 232, Issue. 5, p. 851.

    Shishkina, G. T. Kalinina, T. S. Bulygina, V. V. Babljuk, E. V. and Dygalo, N. N. 2015. Tryptophan hydroxylase 2 and Bcl-xL in the rat raphe nucleus after acute and chronic forced swim stress. Russian Journal of Genetics: Applied Research, Vol. 5, Issue. 6, p. 577.

    Willén, Helena 2015. Challenges for Divorced Parents: Regulating Negative Emotions in Post-Divorce Relationships. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy, Vol. 36, Issue. 3, p. 356.

    Cloosterman, N.H.M. Laan, A.J. and van Alphen, S.P.J. 2014. Kenmerken van psychotherapie integratie bij depressieve ouderen. GZ - Psychologie, Vol. 6, Issue. 1, p. 10.

    Dautovich, Natalie D. Dzierzewski, Joseph M. and Gum, Amber M. 2014. Older Adults Display Concurrent but not Delayed Associations Between Life Stressors and Depressive Symptoms: A Microlongitudinal Study. The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, Vol. 22, Issue. 11, p. 1131.

    Pitman, Alexandra Osborn, David King, Michael and Erlangsen, Annette 2014. Effects of suicide bereavement on mental health and suicide risk. The Lancet Psychiatry, Vol. 1, Issue. 1, p. 86.

    Taha, Farah and Goodwin, Renee D. 2014. Secondhand smoke exposure across the life course and the risk of adult-onset depression and anxiety disorder. Journal of Affective Disorders, Vol. 168, p. 367.

    Wang, JianLi Sareen, Jitender Patten, Scott Bolton, James Schmitz, Norbert and Birney, Arden 2014. A prediction algorithm for first onset of major depression in the general population: development and validation. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, Vol. 68, Issue. 5, p. 418.

    Cloosterman, Nancy H. M. Laan, Anja J. and Van Alphen, Bas P. J. 2013. Characteristics of Psychotherapeutic Integration for Depression in Older Adults: A Delphi Study. Clinical Gerontologist, Vol. 36, Issue. 5, p. 395.

    Omerov, Pernilla Steineck, Gunnar Runeson, Bo Christensson, Anna Kreicbergs, Ulrika Pettersén, Rossana Rubenson, Birgitta Skoogh, Johanna Rådestad, Ingela and Nyberg, Ullakarin 2013. Preparatory Studies to a Population-Based Survey of Suicide-Bereaved Parents in Sweden. Crisis: The Journal of Crisis Intervention and Suicide Prevention, Vol. 34, Issue. 3, p. 200.

    Wang, Jian Li Manuel, Douglas Williams, Jeanne Schmitz, Norbert Gilmour, Heather Patten, Scott MacQueen, Glenda and Birney, Arden 2013. Development and validation of prediction algorithms for major depressive episode in the general population. Journal of Affective Disorders, Vol. 151, Issue. 1, p. 39.

    Stegenga, Bauke T. Nazareth, Irwin Grobbee, Diederick E. Torres-González, Francisco Švab, Igor Maaroos, Heidi-Ingrid Xavier, Miguel Saldivia, Sandra Bottomley, Christian King, Michael and Geerlings, Mirjam I. 2012. Recent life events pose greatest risk for onset of major depressive disorder during mid-life. Journal of Affective Disorders, Vol. 136, Issue. 3, p. 505.

    Wagenaar, Bradley H Hagaman, Ashley K Kaiser, Bonnie N McLean, Kristen E and Kohrt, Brandon A 2012. Depression, suicidal ideation, and associated factors: a cross-sectional study in rural Haiti. BMC Psychiatry, Vol. 12, Issue. 1,

    Nugent, Nicole R. Tyrka, Audrey R. Carpenter, Linda L. and Price, Lawrence H. 2011. Gene–environment interactions: early life stress and risk for depressive and anxiety disorders. Psychopharmacology, Vol. 214, Issue. 1, p. 175.

    Qin, Ping 2011. The impact of psychiatric illness on suicide: Differences by diagnosis of disorders and by sex and age of subjects. Journal of Psychiatric Research, Vol. 45, Issue. 11, p. 1445.


Does the impact of major stressful life events on the risk of developing depression change throughout life?

  • L. V. KESSING (a1), E. AGERBO (a1) and P. B. MORTENSEN (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 November 2003

Background. It is unclear whether there is an interaction of ageing on the association between major life events and onset of depression.

Method. This was a population-based nested case–control study with linkage of the Danish Psychiatric Central Research Register and the Integrated Database for Longitudinal Labour Market Research. The study includes data on all admissions at psychiatric wards in Denmark from 1981 to 1998 and data on sociodemographic variables and death/suicide of first-degree relatives.

Results. A total of 13006 patients who received a diagnosis of depression at the first ever admission at a psychiatric ward and a gender- and age-matched control group of 260108 subjects were identified. A recent divorce and recent unemployment and suicide of a relative (mother, father, sibling, child, spouse) were associated with increased risk of being admitted for the first time ever at a psychiatric ward with a diagnosis of depression whereas death of a relative by causes other than suicide years had no significant effect. In general, no interaction was found with age with any of the variables, totally, or for men or women, separately.

Conclusions. The susceptibility to major life stressors does not seem to change throughout life.

Corresponding author
Dr Lars Vedel Kessing, Department of Psychiatry, University of Copenhagen, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Psychological Medicine
  • ISSN: 0033-2917
  • EISSN: 1469-8978
  • URL: /core/journals/psychological-medicine
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *