Elevated symptoms of depression and anxiety among family members and friends of critically ill COVID-19 patients - an observational study of five cohorts across four countries.

Lovik A, González-Hijón J, Hoffart A, Fawns-Ritchie C, Magnúsdóttir I, Lu L, Unnarsdóttir AB, Kähler AK, Campbell A, Hauksdóttir A, Chourpiliadis C, McCartney DL, Thordardóttir EB, Joyce EE, Frans EM, Jakobsdóttir J, Trogstad L, Andreassen OA, Magnus P, Johnson SU, Sullivan PF, Aspelund T, Porteous DJ, Ask H, Ebrahimi OV, Valdimarsdóttir UA, Fang F

Lancet Reg Health Eur 33 (-) 100733 [2023-10-00; online 2023-09-04]

Little is known regarding the mental health impact of having a significant person (family member and/or close friend) with COVID-19 of different severity. The study included five prospective cohorts from four countries (Iceland, Norway, Sweden, and the UK) with self-reported data on COVID-19 and symptoms of depression and anxiety during March 2020-March 2022. We calculated prevalence ratios (PR) of depression and anxiety in relation to having a significant person with COVID-19 and performed a longitudinal analysis in the Swedish cohort to describe temporal patterns. 162,237 and 168,783 individuals were included in the analysis of depression and anxiety, respectively, of whom 24,718 and 27,003 reported a significant person with COVID-19. Overall, the PR was 1.07 (95% CI: 1.05-1.10) for depression and 1.08 (95% CI: 1.03-1.13) for anxiety in relation to having a significant person with COVID-19. The respective PRs for depression and anxiety were 1.15 (95% CI: 1.08-1.23) and 1.24 (95% CI: 1.14-1.34) if the patient was hospitalized, 1.42 (95% CI: 1.27-1.57) and 1.45 (95% CI: 1.31-1.60) if the patient was ICU-admitted, and 1.34 (95% CI: 1.22-1.46) and 1.36 (95% CI: 1.22-1.51) if the patient died. Individuals with a significant person with hospitalized, ICU-admitted, or fatal COVID-19 showed elevated prevalence of depression and anxiety during the entire year after the COVID-19 diagnosis. Family members and close friends of critically ill COVID-19 patients show persistently elevated prevalence of depressive and anxiety symptoms. This study was primarily supported by NordForsk (COVIDMENT, 105668) and Horizon 2020 (CoMorMent, 847776).

Category: Social Science & Humanities

Funder: H2020

Funder: NordForsk

Type: Journal article

PubMed 37953992

DOI 10.1016/j.lanepe.2023.100733

Crossref 10.1016/j.lanepe.2023.100733

pmc: PMC10636287
pii: S2666-7762(23)00152-7

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