Treating Depression Seems To Help Control Blood Sugar LevelsResearchers have discovered that people who have diabetes and suffer from depression can now be treated for depression, which can bring their blood sugar levels under control. In a recent research, it was found that antidepressant therapy can help not just the blood sugar level but also blood pressure.
The rate of depression appears to be higher in people suffering from diabetes compared to the general population. And, the rate is still higher in minorities who tend to be more susceptible to diabetes-related complications and find it difficult to control their blood sugar levels. However, not many studies have concentrated on the effect of depression therapies on minorities having severe diabetes.
Researchers from the Charles Drew University in Los Angeles selected 89 low income diabetes patients who were also suffering from depression. Out of these, 39 patients were Hispanic, 5 African Americans and 1 patient was listed as other. 45 patients were randomly selected and given setraline, an antidepressant which is sold as Zoloft. The remaining patients were given a placebo.
It was found that after 6 months, the blood sugar levels had fallen substantially in patients who were receiving setraline. The hemoglobin A1C levels fell from 10 percent at the beginning to 8 percent after 6 months. Usually doctors advice that patients with diabetes should try to achieve an A1C level of under 7 percent.
The patients who were receiving the placebo showed just a marginal drop in the A1C level from 9.7 percent to 8.8 percent after 6 months.
Similarly, even the blood pressure in the group receiving the antidepressant had fallen more compared to the group receiving the placebo.
These findings have led the researchers to recommend screening patients with diabetes for depression. And, if these patients are found to be suffering from depression, then doctors should recommend antidepressants for them. This way, the diabetes, depression and blood pressure can be effectively tackled and controlled.