Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a chronic inflammatory disease, associated with significant pain, functional impairment, and diminished quality of life. However, there is significant uncertainty regarding the prevalence of depression in AS and its associations.Objectives
We performed a meta-analysis to examine the prevalence of depression in AS and its associated correlates.Methods:
The study protocol was prospectively registered with PROSPERO (CRD42015019676). EMBASE, Medline, PsycINFO and Web of Science were systematically searched for cross-sectional studies with ≥ 50 adult AS patients, which reported depression prevalence using diagnostic criteria or a validated screening tool. Depression prevalence, tool and threshold used, age, gender, disease duration, as well as measures of disease activity, functional impairment, pain and innate inflammation, were abstracted. OpenMeta was used to calculate pooled prevalence estimates and to conduct meta-regression.Results:Eight hundred and seventy-seven texts were identified and 17 studies satisfied inclusion criteria, totalling 3187 participants (75.2% male). Six diagnostic tools and 10 different thresholds were reported, with depression prevalence estimates ranging from 4.9–55.5%. In studies using the depression subscale of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS-D), 37.1% of participants satisfied criteria for mild (≥ 8) and 8.2% met criteria for moderate depression (≥ 11). Multivariate meta-regression demonstrated significant positive correlations between depression and, respectively, disease activity (P < 0.001) and C-reactive protein (P < 0.001).Conclusions:The prevalence of depression in AS is comparable with that of other rheumatic and degenerative diseases. Moreover, depression demonstrates significant associations with age, inflammation and disease activity, which require further investigation in prospective studies.