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Metabolic Syndrome, Anxiety and Depression in a Sample of Italian Primary Care Patients

Mattei, Giorgio, MD*†‡; Padula, Maria, Stella, MD§∥¶; Rioli, Giulia, MD*; Arginelli, Lodovico, MD§; Bursi, Roberto, MD‡§; Bursi, Serena, MD‡∥; Epifani, Antonio, Matteo, MD§; Pingani, Luca, PhD#; Rigatelli, Marco, MD*; Rosato, Francesca, Maria, MD§; Sacchetti, Andrea, MD*; Galeazzi, Gian, Maria, MD, PhD***; Ferrari, Silvia, MD, PhD***

The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease: May 2018 - Volume 206 - Issue 5 - p 316–324
doi: 10.1097/NMD.0000000000000807
Original Articles

This cross-sectional study aimed at measuring the correlation and association of anxiety, depression and comorbid anxiety-depression symptoms with metabolic syndrome (MetS) in a sample of Italian primary care patients who attended their General Practitioner clinics over a 1-month period in 2013. The Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) was used to assess anxiety and depressive symptoms. The sample was made up of 129 patients (57% women; mean age, 61 ± 12 years). The prevalence of MetS varied from 40% (Adult Treatment Panel III-Revised criteria) to 48% (International Diabetes Federation criteria). The prevalence of symptoms of anxiety, depression and comorbid anxiety and depression was, respectively, 26%, 2%, and 15%. MetS (defined according to Adult Treatment Panel III-Revised criteria) was associated with comorbid anxiety-depressive symptoms (odds ratio [OR] = 3.84, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.26–11.71), but not with anxiety or depressive symptoms only. Out of the individual components of MetS, enlarged waist circumference was associated with anxiety symptoms (OR = 4.22, 95% CI = 1.56–11.44).

*Section of Psychiatry, Department of Diagnostics, Clinical and Public Health Medicine, and †Department of Economics–Marco Biagi Foundation, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia; ‡Association for Research in Psychiatry, Castelnuovo Rangone, Modena; §Department of Primary Care, Local Health Agency of Modena; ∥Department of Biomedical, Metabolic and Neural Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena; ¶Società Italiana di Medicina Generale, Firenze; #Human Resources, Local Health Agency of Reggio Emilia; and **Department of Mental Health, Local Health Agency of Modena, Modena, Italy.

Send reprint requests to Giorgio Mattei, MD, Clinica Psichiatrica, Policlinico di Modena, Via del Pozzo 71, 41124 Modena, Italy. E-mail:

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