Objective: Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and normal aging are both known to impact memory performance. This study was designed to investigate the interactive or compounding effects of MDD and aging on memory performance. Method: Participants included 104 healthy controls (HC) and 96 individuals with diagnoses of MDD, which were divided into “Young” ages 18–35 (N = 121) and “Old” ages 55–75 (N = 79). Repeated measures ANOVAs were performed with California Verbal Learning Test-2 (CVLT) trial as the within-subjects variable and diagnosis (MDD vs. HC) and age group (young vs. old) as the independent variables. T tests and chi square analyses were also performed to assess differences in diagnostic groups with regard to age, education, and Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS) score. Results: Groups did not differ with regard to education, and age was comparable in the younger and older groups, respectively. Depressed participants in both groups had higher HDRS scores. There was a main effect of diagnosis and age, with depressed patients performing worse than non-depressed patients and older patients performing worse than younger patients. A marginally significant interaction of age with diagnosis was observed, with older adults with depression performing more poorly than all other groups (F(1,196) = 3.481, p < .064). For within-subjects effects, there was a significant interaction of trial type with age (F(4.14, 811.974)= 4.083, p < .002. Conclusion: These findings support the double burden hypothesis of depression and age, particularly on memory performance. There may also be compounding effects of age and depression on memory performance, but a larger sample is required.
AGING AND DEMENTIA: HEALTHY AGING AND COGNITION
The Double Burden of Depression and Age on Memory Performance
A O'Mara, E Briceno, E Avery, J Zubieta, S Langenecker, S Weisenbach; AGING AND DEMENTIA: HEALTHY AGING AND COGNITION
The Double Burden of Depression and Age on Memory Performance. Arch Clin Neuropsychol 2015; 30 (6): 526-527. doi: 10.1093/arclin/acv047.110
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