Depression has been linked to a number of physical illnesses in particular cardiovascular disorders. Now, a study by the National Institute of Mental Health in America has found that depression can also lead to a reduction in bone mass in pre-menopausal women. The study had 133 participants, between the ages of 21 and 45 and compared bone mass in those women who had depression with those who were not depressed. 17% of depressed women had bone thinning in a part of the hip called the femoral neck compared to only 2% of other women. Low bone mass in the lower back was found in 20% of depressed women but in only 9% of non-depressed women. Blood and urine samples also showed that the depressed women had imbalances in immune-system substances , including those that produce inflammation. One of these substances IL-6 is known to promote bone loss.
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