27 May 2020: Is adherence to antidepressant medications associated with increased longevity?

Gal Shoval
Sackler Faculty of Medicine
Tel Aviv University

Despite the growing use of antidepressants and the potential grave consequences of inadequate treatment, little is known about the impact of adherence to antidepressant treatment on mortality.
The objective of this line of research was to evaluate the association between adherence to antidepressants and all-cause mortality in a population-based cohort. Data were extracted from the electronic medical record database of the largest health provider in Israel (54% of the nation’s population) on a total of 251,745 patients aged 40 years and above who filled an antidepressant prescription at least once during a 4 year period. The main outcome measure was all-cause mortality during the study period. Adherence was measured as a continuous variable representing possession ratio (duration of filled antidepressant divided by duration of prescribed antidepressant). Proportional hazard Cox regression for multivariable survival analysis was used, adjusting for demographic and clinical variables that affect mortality. We tested our hypothesis in the general population as well as in selected patient populations with certain physical disorders (cardiovascular, stroke, cancer and cancer subtypes, parkinson’s disease). We also looked at the effect of age and gender on antidepressant adherence. The findings will be presented at the talk.