Association of depressive symptoms and social support on blood pressure among urban African American women and girls

Document Type


Peer Reviewed


Publication Date


NLM Title Abbreviation

J Am Acad Nurse Pract

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners

DOI of Published Version


Start Page


End Page



The purpose of this study was to explore the associations between depressive symptoms and perceived social support on blood pressure in African American women. This cross-sectional study was conducted among 159 African American women from multiple sites in the Detroit Metro area. Results from this study found that both higher systolic and diastolic blood pressure were positively associated with higher depressive symptom scores ( r= .20 and .18, p < .05). Higher depressive symptoms scores were, in turn, significantly associated with lower social support scores ( r=-.44, p < .001). However, total social support scores were not significantly correlated with blood pressure readings. Higher depressive symptom scores were associated with increased systolic blood pressure independent of social support. Findings of the present study suggest the importance of appropriate social support to help alleviate depressive symptoms. However, to effectively control blood pressure in patients with depressive symptoms, other pathophysiologic mechanisms between depressive symptoms and elevated blood pressures independent of social support should be examined in future research. Future studies should consider a cohort design to examine the temporal relationship of depressive symptoms, social support, and blood pressure readings.


Depression, Blacks -- Michigan, Support, Psychosocial, Hypertension, Human, Female, Adult, Adolescence, Urban Areas, Cross Sectional Studies, Descriptive Research, Descriptive Statistics, Support, Psychosocial -- Evaluation, Michigan, Systolic Pressure -- Evaluation, Diastolic Pressure -- Evaluation, Power Analysis, Pearson's Correlation Coefficient, Body Mass Index, Middle Age, Aged, Multiple Linear Regression, Logistic Regression, Convenience Sample, Age Factors, Income, Educational Status, Interviews, Home Visits, Funding Source, Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale, Psychological Tests, Scales

Published Article/Book Citation

Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners, 22:12 (2010) pp.694-704. DOI:10.1111/j.1745-7599.2010.00565.x.

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