Publication Details

Tang, A. & Thomas, S. J. (2020). Relationships Between Depressive Symptoms, Other Psychological Symptoms, and Quality of Life. Psychiatry Research, 289 113049-1-113049-9.


Depressive disorders are common, heterogeneous conditions involving physical and psychological symptoms, and substantial impairment in quality of life (QoL). However, relationships between depressive symptoms and QoL are poorly understood, and little research has directly compared relationships between subtypes of depressive symptoms, other psychological symptoms and QoL. This research aimed to examine how symptoms of depression and other mental health conditions are related to QoL. Participants (N=559) completed the World Health Organization Quality of Life - BREF questionnaire, demographic information, the Brief Symptom Inventory, the Beck Depression Inventory II, and the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scales. Relationships between psychological symptoms and QoL were assessed using correlations and linear multiple regressions. QoL was inversely related to all types of psychopathology. Depressive symptoms were the strongest predictors of lower overall QoL. Both somatic and psychological depressive symptoms negatively predicted QoL, with somatic symptoms being stronger predictors. Conclusions: While many types of psychological symptoms were negatively correlated with QoL, depressive symptoms, particularly somatic symptoms, were the strongest predictors of impaired QoL. These findings provide new information about specific relationships between symptom profiles and QoL which may lead to greater understanding of the underlying mechanisms and to improved interventions.



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