Correlates of Depression in Rural Women With Physical Disabilities

Authors

  • Rosemary B. Hughes,

    Corresponding author
    1. Rosemary B. Hughes, PhD, is a senior research scientist at the Rural Institute on Disabilities at the University of Montana, Missoula. She conducted this study while working with the Center for Research on Women with Disabilities at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Margaret A. Nosek,

    1. Margaret A. Nosek, PhD, is executive director of the Center for Research on Women with Disabilities and professor in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Susan Robinson-Whelen

    1. Susan Robinson-Whelen, PhD, is an investigator at the Center for Research on Women with Disabilities and assistant professor at the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas.
    Search for more papers by this author

Address for correspondence: Rosemary B. Hughes, PhD, Rural Institute on Disabilities, 52 Corbin, The University of Montana, Missoula, Montana 59812. E-mail: rhughes@ruralinstitute.umt.edu.

Abstract

Objective:  To describe demographic and disability-related characteristics, to examine the patterns of treatment for depression, and to investigate correlates of depression severity and predictors of who receives treatment among a sample of depressed rural women with physical disabilities.

Design:  A correlational analysis of data gathered from women recruited for a depression intervention study.

Setting:  Rural centers for independent living located in nine different states across the United States.

Participants:  Women (N = 134) who reported at least mild depression and expressed interest in participating in a depression intervention study.

Main outcome measures:  Depressive symptomatology based on the Beck Depression Inventory-II; treatment for depression in the past 3 months.

Results:  The majority of participants reported moderate to severe depression (n = 101, 75.4%), with nearly 20% reporting thoughts of suicide. At risk of severe depression were women who were younger, had greater problems with pain, had more limited mobility, and were less satisfied with their social network. Despite the high levels of depressive symptomatology in the sample, more than one third of the women had not received recent treatment for depression.

Conclusions:  This study suggests that depression and access to treatment are critical issues for women with physical disabilities living in rural areas. JOGNN, 36, 105-114; 2007. DOI: 10.1111/J.1552-6909.2006.00122.x

Ancillary