February 1, 2006

Ethnic Differences in the Relationship between Depressive Symptoms and Health-Related Quality of Life in People with Type 2 Diabetes

Joseph Keawe’aimoku Kaholokula, Stephen N. Haynes, Andrew Grandinetti and Healani K. Chang

Ethnicity & Health

Objective—To examine ethnic differences in the relationship between depressive symptoms and specific aspects of heath-related quality of life in people with type 2 diabetes.

Design—Cross-sectional data from 190 people with type 2 diabetes of Native Hawaiian (50%), Filipino (16%), Japanese (18%), and mixed-ethnic (16%) ancestries from the rural community of North Kōhala, Hawai’i were examined in this study. Depressive symptoms were measured with the
Center for Epidemiological Studies—Depression (CES-D) scale. Health-related quality of life was measured with the Short Form-36 Health Survey (SF-36). Eight health-related quality of life constructs were examined: Physical Functioning, Role-Physical Functioning, Role-Emotional Functioning, Social Functioning, Bodily Pain, Vitality, General Health, and Health Transition.

Results—Hierarchical regression analyses of the interaction between ethnicity and the SF-36 subscales of Physical Functioning, Role-Emotional Functioning, Bodily Pain, Vitality, and General
Health indicated statistically significant associations with CES-D scores after controlling for sociodemographic factors, glycemic status, and social support.

Conclusion—Ethnicity moderated the relationship between depressive symptoms and the health-related quality of life aspects of physical and role-emotional functioning, bodily pain, vitality, and general health perception in people with type 2 diabetes. This relationship was strongest for Filipinos followed by Native Hawaiians and people of mixed-ethnic ancestries.

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