Poststroke Depression In Relation To Different Brain Lesions


ABSTRACTObjectives: This study is aimed at the pathoanatomic correlates of depression in the postacute stage of patients with stroke. Methods: Of a consecutive series of 47 stroke patients, with single demarcated unilateral lesions was selected. Clinical examination, neuroradiological, CT scan examination, and psychiatric assessment were performed within a 2-month period after the acute stroke. Depression was assessed with the Beck Inventory Scale ( BIS ) and DSM-IV-R criteria. The neuroradiological examination of all patients was performed on the same scanner, lesion location, lesion volume, and ventricle-to-brain ratio were analyzed. Results : We found no significant differences in depression scores between patients with left and right hemisphere lesions and no correlation between the severity of depression and the anteriority and or the volume of lesion or brain atrophy. Major depressive disorders were only found in nine patients with left hemisphere lesions, all involving the basal ganglia, whereas none of the patients with right hemisphere stroke exhibited major depression. Conclusions: Lesions in the vicinity of the left hemisphere basal ganglia tend to play a crucial role in the development of major depression after the acute stage of stroke. The pathophysiological implications of this finding are discussed.