Mayo Clinic researchers have determined that patients awaiting lung transplants frequently suffer from anxiety, stress, or depressive symptoms, and these symptoms are not isolated to patients with pre-existing psychiatric diagnoses. An American College of Chest Physicians news release notes that pre-existing psychiatric diagnoses have been investigated prior to lung transplant, but little is known about the prevalence and burden of active depression, anxiety, and stress symptoms pre-transplant.

The retrospective review of patients undergoing lung transplant from 2000-2013 at the Mayo Clinic found 42% of patients reported depression-related emotional symptoms and 52% had depression-related physical symptoms. A total of 17.6% of these patients reported a prior diagnosis of depression.

“Our study has uncovered a need for interventions aimed at reducing stress, supporting emotional health, reducing anxiety–regardless of a patient’s psychiatric history,” said Abhar Vakil, MD, lead researcher and Mayo Clinic physician. “Our study also highlights that depression-related physical symptoms experienced by patients awaiting lung transplant may be difficult to separate from chronic illness.”

Source: American College of Chest Physicians