All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Olivio J Clay

Advisory Committee Members

Fernando Ovalle

Michael Crowe

Document Type

Thesis

Date of Award

2012

Degree Name by School

Master of Arts (MA) College of Arts and Sciences

Abstract

Objectives: The authors investigated the relationship between various factors related to stress--demographic variables, comorbid health problems, cognitive function, and disease-related distress--and depressive symptoms. Method: The sample included 234 older adults (65 years or older) who had been diagnosed with diabetes. These individuals completed a telephone interview related to living with diabetes. Results: Results in the final model indicated that high levels of diabetes-related distress (B = .49, p < .0001), suffering a stroke (B = .20, p < .0001), and reporting neuropathy (B = .13, p =.0102) were each individually associated with a greater number of depressive symptoms. Results also suggest that diabetes-related distress acts as a mediator of the association between cognitive function and depressive symptoms. Discussion: Findings suggest that interventions targeted to help older adults properly manage their diabetes and reduce the likelihood of experiencing additional complications may lead to a cost-effective option for reducing depressive symptoms within this population.

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