skip to page content
Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

Health Systems Research

Go to the VA ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Prevalence of depression diagnoses and use of antidepressant medications by veterans with spinal cord injury

Smith BM, Weaver FM, Ullrich PM. Prevalence of depression diagnoses and use of antidepressant medications by veterans with spinal cord injury. American journal of physical medicine & rehabilitation / Association of Academic Physiatrists. 2007 Aug 1; 86(8):662-71.

Related HSR&D Project(s)

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


OBJECTIVES: The objectives of this study were to examine the prevalence of depression diagnoses among veterans with spinal cord injuries and disabilities (SCIandD) for a 3-yr period, and to characterize patterns of antidepressant medication use in this population. DESIGN: This study was a retrospective analysis of clinical and administrative data. The sample consisted of 3678 veterans with SCIandD who had received any health care at a Department of Veterans Affairs facility between fiscal years 1999 and 2001, a depression diagnosis, and complete data. Logistic regression analysis was used to examine associations between patient characteristics, antidepressant types, and prescription patterns. RESULTS: Approximately 22% of veterans with SCIandD received a diagnosis of depression during at least one encounter with a healthcare provider. Of those diagnosed, 72% received antidepressant prescriptions. However, a large percentage (67%) did not continue antidepressant use for 6 mos. Patients started on a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor were more likely to have at least 6 mos of continuous use than patients started on other, newer antidepressants. CONCLUSIONS: Many veterans with SCIandD may not be receiving adequate treatment for depression. Veterans with SCIandD should be aggressively screened and treated for depression, and further research is necessary to determine which treatments for depression are most effective for persons with SCIandD.

Questions about the HSR website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.