Chronic prescription of antidepressant medication in patients with chronic kidney disease with and without kidney replacement therapy compared with matched controls in the Dutch general population

M.J.M. van Oosten*, D. Koning, S.J.J. Logtenberg, M.J.H. Leegte, H.J.G. Bilo, M.H. Hemmelder, K.J. Jager, V.S. Stel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is associated with a higher prevalence of depression, neuropathic pain and insomnia. These conditions are often treated pharmaceutically. In this study we aimed to determine the prevalence of chronic antidepressant use among CKD patients with and without kidney replacement therapy (KRT). Methods By using the Dutch health claims database, we were able to determine the prevalence, type and dosage of chronic antidepressant prescriptions in patients with CKD Stage G4/G5 without KRT (n = 14 905), patients on dialysis (n = 3872) and patients living on a functioning graft (n = 8796) and compared these to age-, sex- and socio-economic status (SES)-matched controls from the general population. Results Our data show that the prevalence of chronic antidepressant prescription is 5.6%, 5.3% and 4.2% in CKD Stage G4/G5, dialysis and kidney transplant patients, respectively, which is significantly higher than in matched controls. Although our data revealed more prescriptions in female patients and in the age category 45-64 years, our data did not show any association between antidepressant prescriptions and SES. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors were the most prescribed drugs in all patient groups and controls. Tricyclic antidepressants were more often used in patients compared with controls. Conclusion This nationwide analysis revealed that chronic antidepressant prescription in the Netherlands is higher in CKD patients with and without KRT than in controls, higher in middle-aged patients and women, unrelated to socio-economic status and lower than chronic use reported in other countries.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)778-785
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Kidney Journal
Issue number4
Early online date3 Dec 2021
Publication statusPublished - 31 Mar 2022


  • antidepressant medication
  • chronic kidney disease
  • depression
  • dialysis
  • kidney transplantation

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