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Depression and risk factors among Iowa farmers.
Scarth RD; Zwerling C; Lewis MQ; Burmeister LF
J Agromed 1997 Jan; 4(3/4):207-216
This study of 390 Iowa farmworkers was designed to assess the prevalence and risk factors for depression. The relationships and magnitudes of risk factors for depressive symptoms were measured for primary farm operators in the Iowa Farm Family Health and Hazard Surveillance Project. Of the farmworkers surveyed 12.1% had depressive symptoms based on a cut off point of 16 on a standardized questionnaire for depressive symptoms, the CES-D Scale. A weighted multiple logistic regression model yielded the following risk factors for depressive symptoms: legal problems, 7.35; not married, 3.89; sentimental value loss, 2.96; substantial decrease in income, 2.91; and decline in general health assessment compared with the group who were in excellent health, 3.39, and compared with the fair and poor group, 5.41. The authors suggest that if risk factors for depression can be identified and quantified, preventive strategies and treatments can be designed and implemented. The authors conclude that the risk factors identified were logical and most were similar to other studies. They also conclude that the effects appear to be cumulative.
NIOSH-Cooperative-Agreement; Agriculture; Psychological-disorders; Farmers; Risk-factors; Attitude; Mental-stress
Issue of Publication
Journal of Agromedicine
University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division