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Open Access Highly Accessed Open Badges Research article

Prevalence and correlates of depression among chronic kidney disease patients in Taiwan

Hsin-Hung Chiang1, Hanoch Livneh2, Mei-Ling Yen1, Tsai-Chung Li34 and Tzung-Yi Tsai567*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Nursing, Buddhist Dalin Tzu Chi General Hospital, Chiayi, Taiwan

2 Rehabilitation Counseling Program, Portland State University, Portland, USA

3 Graduate Institute of Biostatistics, College of Public Health, China Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan

4 Department of Healthcare Administration, College of Health Science, Asia University, Taichung, Taiwan

5 Department of Medical Research, Buddhist Dalin Tzu Chi General Hospital, Chiayi, Taiwan

6 Department of Nursing, Tzu Chi College of Technology, Hualien, Taiwan

7 Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan

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BMC Nephrology 2013, 14:78  doi:10.1186/1471-2369-14-78

Published: 4 April 2013



Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a progressive disease that causes a permanent impairment of renal function and premature mortality. The associated prognosis may result in serious psychological distress to the affected individual. However, there are limited data on the psychological correlates, and in particular depression, in Chinese CKD patients. This study aimed to examine the prevalence of depression, as well as the influence of other psychosocial factors on depression, among Taiwanese CKD patients.


We used a cross-sectional research design to recruit 270 CKD patients who were not undergoing dialysis treatment at a hospital in southern Taiwan during 2011. The structured questionnaire used in this study gathered information on respondent demographic and disease characteristics, and information obtained from the Taiwanese Depression Questionnaire. Factors associated with depression were examined by a multiple logistic regression analysis.


The crude and age-standardized prevalence of depression were 22.6% and 20.6%, respectively. Those who had sleep disturbances, reported having no religious beliefs, followed no regular exercise regimen, and were diagnosed with stage III or above CKD demonstrated a significantly higher risk of depression.


Our findings are beneficial to healthcare providers, as they identify both the prevalence of depression and several of its correlates. By identifying CKD patients with a higher risk of depression, healthcare providers may be better able to ensure the provision of appropriate rehabilitation to this population.

Depression; Chronic kidney disease; Prevalence; Taiwan