Depressive disorders, are not only common but also among the leading causes of disability
worldwide. They are associated with increased incidences of various other diseases. It has been shown
that in patients with autoimmune diseases, when depression coexists, the quality of life is worse and
medical treatment and management is compromised. Depression-like symptoms, such as fatigue and
disinterest are also common in inflammatory rheumatic diseases and often associated with poor quality
of life. Medical therapy targeting inflammation results in alleviation of these symptoms in many patients.
Interestingly, there is cumulating evidence suggesting potential roles of inflammatory cytokines
in the pathogenesis of major depression. Effects of some of the biological agents used in rheumatic
diseases have been studied on depressive disorders. Results have been controversial and further studies
are needed in this area. These findings suggest associations between depression and inflammatory
rheumatic diseases and raise the possibility that treatment of one of them might influence the outcome
of the other. We have reviewed the current literature on associations between depression and inflammatory
rheumatologic diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, Sjögren’s
syndrome and ankylosing spondylitis.
Keywords: Depression, Inflammation, Rheumatic, Rheumatoid arthritis, Systemic lupus erythematosus, Ankylosing spondylitis,
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