The comorbidity of hypertension and psychological distress: a study of nine countries in the former Soviet Union
Journal of public health
A B S T R AC T Background Mental health problems in those with physical ailments are often overlooked, especially in the former Soviet Union (fSU) where this comorbidity has received little attention. Our study examines the comorbidity of psychological distress and hypertension in the fSU. Methods Nationally representative household survey data from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine in 2001 and 2010 were analysed to compare the levels of
... pare the levels of psychological distress in people with and without self-reported hypertension. Multivariate regression analysed determinants of psychological distress in hypertensive respondents, and prevalence rate ratios were calculated to compare the change in distress between the two groups. Results There were significantly higher levels of psychological distress among hypertensive respondents (9.9%) than in the general population (4.9%), and a significant association between the two conditions [odds ratio (OR) ¼ 2.27 (1.91; 2.70)]. Characteristics associated with distress among hypertensive respondents included residing in Armenia or Kyrgyzstan, being female, over age 50, with a poor economic situation, lower education, poor emotional support and limited access to medical drugs. Levels of distress declined between 2001 and 2010, but at a lesser rate in hypertensive respondents [rate ratio (RR) ¼ 0.85 (0.75; 0.95)] than non-hypertensive respondents [RR ¼ 0.65 (0.56; 0.75)]. Conclusions There is a significant association between psychological distress and hypertension in the region.