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Variable quality of life for those with anxiety shown by new study findings

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11 January 2024

Published findings from the TACK study (Tackling chronic depression) highlight the need for further research for patients living with anxiety disorders 

The study looked at the factors associated with subjective quality of life (SQoL) for patients with psychosis, depression and anxiety. The study team reviewed patient information to conduct a meta-analysis based on the SQoL scores received. 

The findings have been published in Science Direct: Comparison of subjective quality of life domains in schizophrenia, mood, and anxiety disorders; an individual patient data meta-analysis. The article explains the study included anxiety disorders as a focus alongside schizophrenia and mood disorders because of the previous lack of research looking at quality of life in these individuals. This is despite the available evidence suggesting individuals with an anxiety disorder report particularly low satisfaction with life when compared to individuals with schizophrenia or mood disorders.

The results section of the article includes the following:

“Individuals with an anxiety disorder reported the widest range of scores, having both the highest (5.34 for relationship with family) and lowest (3.11 for financial situation) mean satisfaction in individual domains across the whole dataset. People with an anxiety disorder reported lower satisfaction on average with their employment situation, financial situation, physical and mental health, but also reported higher satisfaction with the people they live with and their relationship with family, than individuals with a mood or schizophrenia disorder.”

The Social Psychiatry department at Queen Mary’s University London posted on X (formerly Twitter):

“Many interesting findings contained within the paper but perhaps the most novel (and relatively unexpected) is that those with anxiety disorders had the widest range of SQoL scores & reported lower satisfaction in most domains. This warrants more research [on] anxiety”

The TACK study has several work packages being run in the NHS which are being sponsored by East London NHS Foundation Trust. The project funding is from the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR).

The study aims to develop a new approach to help people with depression, a common mental health problem affecting one in four people at some point in their life. About one in five will have chronic depression where it continues for over two years and where there are limited treatments available. As part of the study, a solution focused intervention developed from a previous study focused on schizophrenia, DIALOG+,  is being tested.



Image: Uday Mittal