HealthDay News — Caregiver depression is associated with child asthma outcomes, and the relationship appears to be partially mediated by child depressive symptom severity, according to a study published online in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice.

E. Sherwood Brown, MD, PhD, from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, and colleagues examined whether the proportion of time a caregiver was in depression remission predicted subsequent child asthma control in a study involving 205 caregivers with current major depressive disorder and their children aged 7 to 17 years with persistent asthma. Participants were observed every 4 weeks for 52 weeks.

The researchers found that the caregiver proportion of time in the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HRSD)-assessed remission of depression significantly predicted improvement in the (Childhood) Asthma Control Test, Children’s Depression Inventory (CDI), and forced expiratory volume in 1 second percentage predicted. The relationship between caregiver HRSD scores and child asthma control scores was mediated by child CDI score, but not medication adherence.


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“The results indicate that caregiver depression contributes to worsening child asthma control partially through child depression,” the authors write. “These observations have important clinical implications, suggesting both caregiver depression and child depression are potential targets for adjunct intervention to improve child asthma outcomes.”

Brown disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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