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Anxiety and the risk of death in older men and women

  • Hein P. J. van Hout (a1), Aartjan T. F. Beekman (a2), Edwin De Beurs (a3), Hannie Comijs (a4), Harm Van Marwijk (a1), Marten De Haan (a1), Willem Van Tilburg (a5) and Dorly J. H. Deeg (a5)...
Abstract
Background

There are inconsistent reports as to whether people with anxiety disorders have a higher mortality risk.

Aims

To determine whether anxiety disorders predict mortality in older men and women in the community Method Longitudinal data were used from a large, community-based random sample (n=3107) of older men and women (55–85 years) in The Netherlands, with a follow-up period of 7.5 years. Anxiety disorders were assessed according to DSM–III criteria in a two-stage screening design.

Results

In men, the adjusted mortality risk was 1.78 (95% Cl 1.01–3.13) in cases with diagnosed anxiety disorders at baseline. In women, no significant association was found with mortality.

Conclusions

The study revealed a gender difference in the association between anxiety and mortality. For men, but not for women, an increased mortality risk was found for anxiety disorders.

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Copyright
Corresponding author
Mr Hein van Hout, Department of General Practice, Institute for Research in Extramural Medicine, VU University Medical Centre, Van der Boechorststraat 7, 1081 BT Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Tel: +31 20 4448199; fax: +31 20 4448361; e-mail: Hpj.vanhout@vumc.nl
Footnotes
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Declaration of interest

None.

Footnotes
References
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Anxiety and the risk of death in older men and women

  • Hein P. J. van Hout (a1), Aartjan T. F. Beekman (a2), Edwin De Beurs (a3), Hannie Comijs (a4), Harm Van Marwijk (a1), Marten De Haan (a1), Willem Van Tilburg (a5) and Dorly J. H. Deeg (a5)...
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