Secular trends in the prevalence of major and subthreshold depression among 55-64-year olds over 20 years

  • HW Jeuring HW Jeuring
  • ATF Beekman ATF Beekman
  • Dorly Deeg Dorly Deeg
  • Hannie Comijs Hannie Comijs
  • Martijn Huisman Martijn Huisman
  • ML Stek ML Stek


Studying secular trends in the exposure to risk and protective factors of depression and whether these trends are associated with secular trends in the prevalence of depression is important to estimate future healthcare demands and to identify targets for prevention.


Three birth cohorts of 55–64-year olds from the population-based Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam were examined using identical methods in 1992 (n = 944), 2002 (n = 964) and 2012 (n = 957). A two-stage screening design was used to identify subthreshold depression (SUBD) and major depressive disorder (MDD). Multinomial logistic regression analyses were used to identify secular trends in depression prevalence and to identify factors from the biopsychosocial domains of functioning that were associated with these trends.

Netspar, Network for Studies on Pensions, Aging and Retirement, is a thinktank and knowledge network. Netspar is dedicated to promoting a wider understanding of the economic and social implications of pensions, aging and retirement in the Netherlands and Europe.


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