Qi deficiency is associated with depression in chronic hemodialysis patients

Yuan Ching Liao, Che Yi Chou, Chiz Tzung Chang, Tsai Chung Li, Mao Feng Sun, Hen Hong Chang, Fuu Jen Tsai, Hung Rong Yen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

9 Scopus citations


Objective Depression is a common bio-psycho-social problem in hemodialysis (HD) patients. Traditional Chinese medicine has been used for symptom management in patients with depression. Identification of the specific constitution in traditional Chinese medicine is critical for personalized care. However, the association between depression and specific constitution in HD patients is unknown. Methods We conducted a cross-sectional study in all chronic HD patients (HD for more than 3 months) at China Medical University Hospital in Taiwan. The depression symptom severity was determined using the Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II). Clinical patterns in Chinese medicine were determined using the Constitution in Chinese Medicine Questionnaire. The association between constitution and depression was analyzed using logistic regression. Results We recruited 467 chronic hemodialysis patients, including 219 females and 248 males, with a mean age of 63 ± 12 years. The mean duration of HD was 5.8 years. The mean score for the BDI-II was 11 (interquartile range 8–14). The major constitution was Yang-deficiency (43.7%) among these chronic HD patients. Qi-deficiency was correlated with a duration of HD of more than 5.8 years (p = 0.04). Qi-deficiency [odds ratio (OR): 4.05, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.69–9.72, p < 0.01] was also associated with depression in logistic regression with adjustments for confounders, including calcium, phosphorus and hemoglobin levels. Conclusion Qi-deficiency constitution in Chinese medicine is associated with depression in chronic HD patients. Further studies are needed to determine whether treating Qi-deficiency integrating Chinese medicine treatment can improve patients’ depression symptoms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)102-106
Number of pages5
JournalComplementary Therapies in Medicine
StatePublished - 01 02 2017
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier Ltd


  • Chronic kidney diseases
  • Constitution
  • Depression
  • Hemodialysis
  • Traditional Chinese medicine


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