Post-stroke depression, antidepressant treatment and rehabilitation results: A case-control study

Stefano Paolucci, Gabriella Antonucci, Maria Grazia Grasso, Daniela Morelli, Elio Troisi, Paola Coiro, Domenico De Angelis, Francesco Rizzi, Maura Bragoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The aim of this study was to assess the specific influence of poststroke depression (PSD) on both basal functional status and rehabilitation results. We performed a case-control study in 290 stroke inpatients, matched for age (±1 year) and onset admission interval (±3 days) and divided in two groups according to the presence (PSD+) or absence (PSD-) of PSD. All PSD +patients were treated with antidepressants (AD), mainly with fluoxetine. PSD + patients, despite similar severity of stroke, showed greater disability in coping with activities of daily living (ADL) on admission and greater disability both in ADL and mobility at discharge than PSD- patients. Although both groups exhibited similar average functional improvement during rehabilitation, PSD- patients were nearly twice as likely to show excellent recovery both on ADL and mobility as PSD +patients (OR =1.95, 95% CI =1.01-3.75 and OR =2.23, 95% CI =1.14-4.35, respectively). All AD drugs improved depressive symptoms. Few relevant side effects were observed: fluoxetine was discontinued in 2 patients because of insomnia and in 2 patients because of nausea; paroxetine was stopped in 1 patient because of nausea and dry mouth. Our results confirm the unfavorable influence of PSD on functional outcome, despite pharmacological treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)264-271
Number of pages8
JournalCerebrovascular Diseases
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Antidepressive agents
  • Cerebrovascular disorders
  • Depression
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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