New research suggests people of African heritage who suffer from depression are more at risk of health problems such as stroke and heart disease.
A study carried out by the Clinical Research Institute at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, US, found people of African ethnicity with major depressive symptoms, such as perceived stress, neuroticism and life dissatisfaction, had close to double the risk of stroke and coronary heart disease.
Of the people assessed, those with depressive symptoms had a 3.7 per cent risk of stroke, compared to 2.6 per cent for those without. For coronary heart disease, the figures were 5.6 per cent and 3.6 per cent respectively.
Lead researcher on the project Dr Emily O'Brien stated: "The need for greater understanding of associations between depressive symptoms and cardiovascular outcomes in African Americans is particularly important in light of reported racial disparities in disease severity, timely diagnosis, and use of drug therapy."
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