Influence of Post-Stroke Depression on Functional Independence in Activities of Daily Living
BACKGROUND: Little attention has been paid to screening of depression among stroke survivors in outpatient physiotherapy clinics. Post-stroke depression is reported to have a negative impact on functional recovery. However, the exact influence on the outcome of rehabilitation such as level of functional independence remains controversial. This study aims at ascertaining the influence of post-stroke depression on functional independence in activities of daily living.
METHODS: The study is a cross sectional survey of stroke survivors attending outpatient physiotherapy clinics of the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH) Enugu, and the Enugu State University Teaching Hospital (ESUTH). Participants were evaluated for socio demographic characteristics. Post-stroke depression and level of functional recovery in Activities of Daily Living were assessed using the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale and the Barthel Index respectively. Data was analyzed using SPSS version 23, with α set at 0.01.
RESULTS: A total of 66 participants, 42 females and 24 males, were purposively recruited into the study. Over 80% (56) of the participant had depression, with over 50% (32) being severely depressed. Post-stroke depression was associated with less functional independence in activities of daily living (p=0.000). A significant difference was found in the level of functional independence between participants with and without depression (p=0.00).
CONCLUSION: Participants with post-stroke depression have less independence in activities of daily living. A longitudinal study with a larger sample size is, however, recommended so as to improve the external validity. In the mean time, outpatient rehabilitation of depressed stroke survivors should include pharmacological and psychological components.