Article

Prevalence, course, and comorbidity of insomnia and depression in young adults. Sleep

Department ofPsychiatry, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA.
Sleep (Impact Factor: 4.59). 05/2008; 31(4):473-80. DOI: 10.5167/uzh-10110
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT

(1) To describe the prevalence and prospective course of insomnia in a representative young-adult sample and (2) to describe the cross-sectional and longitudinal associations between insomnia and depression.
Longitudinal cohort study.
Community of Zurich, Switzerland.
Representative stratified population sample.
None.
The Zurich Study prospectively assessed psychiatric, physical, and sleep symptoms in a community sample of young adults (n=591) with 6 interviews spanning 20 years. We distinguished 4 duration-based subtypes of insomnia: 1-month insomnia associated with significant distress, 2- to 3-week insomnia, recurrent brief insomnia, and occasional brief insomnia. The annual prevalence of 1-month insomnia increased gradually over time, with a cumulative prevalence rate of 20% and a greater than 2-fold risk among women. In 40% of subjects, insomnia developed into more chronic forms over time. Insomnia either with or without comorbid depression was highly stable over time. Insomnia lasting 2 weeks or longer predicted major depressive episodes and major depressive disorder at subsequent interviews; 17% to 50% of subjects with insomnia lasting 2 weeks or longer developed a major depressive episode in a later interview. "Pure" insomnia and "pure" depression were not longitudinally related to each other, whereas insomnia comorbid with depression was longitudinally related to both.
This longitudinal study confirms the persistent nature of insomnia and the increased risk of subsequent depression among individuals with insomnia. The data support a spectrum of insomnia (defined by duration and frequency) comorbid with, rather than secondary to, depression.

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