Dagmar Hartung1, Katja Hueper2, Marcel Gutberlet1, Anne- Mieke Detlef3, Claire Weiss3, Anne Von Bohlen3, Refik Pul4, Ulrich Schweiger5, Helge Frieling3, Ralf Lichtinghagen6, Frank Wacker1, Kai G. Kahl3
1Radiology, Medical School Hannover, Hannover, Germany; 2Radiology, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany; 3Psychiatry, Medical School Hannover, Hannover, Germany; 4Neurology, Medical School Hannover, Hannover, Germany; 5Psychiatry, University Medical Center Schleswig-Holstein, Lbeck, Germany; 6Clinical Chemistry, Medical School Hannover, Hannover, Germany
Major depressive disorder is associated with an increased risk for coronary artery disease. As epicardial adipose tissue (EAT), a metabolically active visceral fat depot, has been implicated in the pathogenesis of coronary artery disease, we hypothesize that EAT is increased in patients with major depression. Fat volumes were quantified by MRI and compared between groups. EAT was significantly elevated in patients with major depression and highest in a subgroup of patients with chronic depression. Therefore, increased EAT may contribute to the higher cardiovascular morbidity in depressed patients and particularly in the chronic form of this disease.