Psychological Indicators in Early-Stage ADPKD

Life expectancy and quality of life are predicted by the presence of psychological disorders. Diagnosis of autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD) is often diagnosed prior to the onset of subjective symptoms, according to Magdalena Jankowska, MD, PhD, and colleagues. ADPKD is of genetic origin and may be a source of psychological disorders, particularly in the early stages.

The researchers conducted a study designed to identify data on the acceptance of illness, the emotional suppression of anger, anxiety, depression, and satisfaction of life among patients with asymptomatic ADPKD. The study cohort included young patients with early-stage ADPKD who were matched to healthy demographically similar individuals. Results of the study were reported in Nephron [].

Fifty patients in the asymptomatic stage of ADPKD with an estimated glomerular filtration rate >60 mL/min/1.72 m2 were matched to 50 healthy demographically matched individuals. Participants completed a set of three psychological questionnaires: (1) Acceptance of Illness Scale (AIS), (2) Courtauld Emotional Control Scale (CECS); and (3) Satisfaction With Life Scale (SWLS).

On the AIS, the asymptomatic patients with ADPKD had 80% scores indicative of disease acceptance. Compared with the healthy study participants, the group with ADPKD presented with significantly stronger suppression of both anxiety and depression, but no anger. Satisfaction with life was significantly lower among the ADPKD group than in the healthy group.

“Asymptomatic ADPKD patients had a high level of disease acceptance. Anger suppression in the group was comparable to healthy individuals, but anxiety and depression were controlled more intensively. Despite the asymptomatic course of the disease, ADPKD patients revealed lower satisfaction with life in comparison to healthy persons,” the researchers said.