Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis


Epidemiology and Biostatistics

First Advisor

Daheia Barr-Anderson


Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurological disorder that affects elderly individuals, and is becoming an increasing concern among the aging population of the world. Due to the projected increase in incidence of AD, modifiable risk factors such as depression and obesity should be evaluated, as prevention is the only current option. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of obesity and depression among AD patients, and to evaluate the association between depression and obesity. Patients were chosen from a subset of the South Carolina Alzheimer’s disease registry, which included information about weight status and depression, as well as several other comorbidities and other potential confounding variables. All persons in the registry have been diagnosed with AD by a physician. A total of 641 AD patients were included in the study, with 17.6% (n = 113) classified as obese, and 53.7% (n = 338) self-reporting depressive symptoms. Using several types of regression – linear, logistic, and ordinal logistic – no significant association was found between depression and obesity after controlling for confounding factors (OR of 0.831 [0.545, 1.267], 0.770 [0.489, 1.212] for logistic and ordinal regression, respectively). Linear regression was deemed to be a poor fit for the data, thus could not be used. These null findings could be due to missing potential confounders or relatively small sample sizes. Further study is needed.

Included in

Epidemiology Commons