Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 92, Issue 5, pp 392–395 | Cite as

Descriptive Epidemiology of a Depressive Syndrome in a Western Canadian Community Population

  • Scott B. PattenEmail author


Objective: To evaluate cross-sectional associations between depressive episodes and a set of potential biopsychosocial determinants in Calgary, Canada.

Methods: Random digit dialling (RDD) was used to select a sample consisting of 2,542 household residents in Calgary. These subjects were interviewed over the telephone using the Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI) short form for major depression, and a questionnaire evaluating a variety of biopsychosocial variables.

Results: The prevalence of major depression was associated with biological (family history of major depression, alcohol consumption, street drug use), psychological (ratings of stress, recent life events) and social factors (social support, marital status, income, level of education).

Conclusion: This study confirms that major depression is correlated with a diverse set of potential determinants in community populations, and that the impact of these determinants may differ between different populations. Prospective studies will be needed to further investigate these associations.


Objectif: Évaluer les liens transversaux entre les accès dépressifs et un ensemble de déterminants bio-psycho-sociaux possibles à Calgary.

Méthode: Nous avons sélectionné par composition aléatoire un échantillon de 2 542 ménages à Calgary. Les sujets ont été interviewés au téléphone à l’aide de la forme abrégée pour la dépression majeure du Composite International Diagnostic Interview et d’un questionnaire évaluant une gamme de variables bio-psycho-sociales.

Résultats: La prévalence de la dépression majeure était associée à des facteurs biologiques (antécédents familiaux de dépression majeure, consommation d’alcool ou de drogues illicites), psychologiques (perception du stress, récents événements marquants) et sociaux (soutien social, état matrimonial, revenu, scolarité).

Conclusion: L’étude confirme que la dépression majeure est corrélée avec un ensemble diversifié de déterminants dans les populations locales, et que les incidences de ces déterminants peuvent varier d’une population à l’autre. Il faudrait mener des études prospectives pour élucider ces corrélations.


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Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Population Health InvestigatorAlberta Heritage Foundation for Medical ResearchCanada
  2. 2.Departments of Community Health Sciences and Psychiatry, Faculty of MedicineThe University of CalgaryCalgaryCanada

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