Depression, cardiometabolic function and left ventricular hypertrophy in African men and women: the SABPA study

05 May 2015

Depressive symptoms are associated with an increased risk for developing cardiovascular diseases, driven by its link to the metabolic syndrome (MetS). This phenomenon, however, still needs to be investigated in the African population. The aim of this study is to investigate the association between left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) and MetS risk markers in a determined sample. The researchers stratified Black African men and women into with depressive symptoms (D) or without depressive symptoms (ND) group, based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition criteria score. Fasting MetS, chronic hyperglycemia (HbA1c), ambulatory blood pressure (BP) and Cornell product-LVH (CP-LVH) in ECG measures were obtained. Depressive symptoms were reported in 45.3% of the sample. Independent of depression status, African men and women revealed a pre-diabetic state (glycated hemoglobin >5.7%). CP-LVH was associated with decreased low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol in D African women. In D African men, systolic BP (P = .001) and HbA1c (P = .08) explained 64% and 31% of the variation in LVH, respectively. In conclusion, depressive symptoms in Black African women were associated with a measure of target end organ damage, CP-LVH, and this association was driven by a metabolic factor. In Black African men, independent of depressive symptoms, LVH, was driven by cardiometabolic factors, namely SBP and HbA1c.