The University of the West Indies - St. Augustine Campus, Trinidad & Tobago
Jannel Gentius is a Lecturer at the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine Campus and has received her PhD in Psychology. Her research interests include attitudes towards health-related stigmatized conditions, health behavior, attitude change, attitudes towards marginalized groups and mental health. She has a keen interest in research and in developing a strong research culture in the Caribbean. She believes that evidence-based research is critical in understanding and addressing the social, psychological, and economic and governance challenges faced by the Caribbean.
Regardless of the many advances in medicine, there has been an alarming increase in the number of diabetics in the Caribbean. Furthermore, prevalence of diabetes in the region is projected to increase by 148% by the year 2030. The objective of this research was to examine the predictors of depressive symptomology among patients with type-2 diabetics in a Trinidadian sample. Data was collected from 200 patients with type-2 diabetes at hospitals and diabetes clinics in Trinidad using a self-administered questionnaire. The questionnaire measured their anxiety, depression symptomology, perceptions of social support and demographic information such as age and gender. The mean age of participants was M=55 and SD=15.9. Standard multiple regression was used to analyze the data. Multiple regression indicated that the four variables in combination significantly predicted patients’ depressive symptomology R2=0.16, F (4,189)=9.21, p<0.001, with 95% confi dence limits for R2 from 0.07 to 0.25. Th e size and direction of the relationships suggests that depressive symptomology is greatly infl uenced by increased anxiety β=0.34, t=5.05, p<0.001, decreased social support β=-0.14, t=-2.15, p<0.05 and that women experience higher depressive symptoms than men β=0.15, t=2.19, p<0.05. Understanding depression and some of the determinants of depression among persons with diabetes is important for diabetes care since depression can hamper diabetes self-care. Interventions to reduce anxiety and to increase social support of diabetic patients may prove benefi cial in reduction of depressive symptoms and consequently improve diabetes care. Depression management is necessary among persons with diabetes and special focus should be place on women.