June 17, 2016 – Depression After ICU


Anchor lead:  More than patients can develop depression after an ICU stay, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Depression as well as other mental health issues such as anxiety and PTSD are common among ICU survivors, but now a new study shows that caregivers of those who’ve made it through an ICU stay are also at high risk.  Alison Turnbull, an assistant professor of critical care medicine at Johns Hopkins, says depression was common months after the event.

Turnbull: What they found is that lots of family members experienced depression at all time points.  And for many family members that depression got better but for some it didn’t.  Whether or not that depression got better and kind of how bad it was was not necessarily dependent on how the patient was doing so much as how much the caregiver, the family member had had to give up of their life and how supported they felt.  :28

Turnbull says the findings point to a need for screening of both patients and caregivers following an ICU stay.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.