Prevalence and predictors of violent victimization in remitted patients with recurrent depression

C. Christ*, M. de Jonge, C. L.H. Bockting, M. J. Kikkert, D. J.F. van Schaik, A. T.F. Beekman, J. J.M. Dekker

*Corresponding author for this work

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Background: Depressed patients are at increased risk to fall victim to a violent crime compared to the general population. It remains unknown whether their increased risk persists after remission. This study compared victimization rates of remitted patients with both a random general population sample and a group of currently depressed patients. Furthermore, this study aimed to identify predictors of future violent victimization. Methods: In this longitudinal study conducted in the Netherlands, 12-month prevalence rates of sexual assaults, physical assaults, and threats were assessed with the Safety Monitor in 140 currently remitted patients with recurrent depression, and compared to those of a weighted general population sample (N = 9.175) and a weighted sample of currently depressed outpatients (N = 102) using Chi-square tests. Logistic regression analyses were performed to identify baseline predictors of future victimization. Results: The prevalence of violent victimization did not differ between remitted patients and the general population (12.1 vs. 11.7%). Remitted patients were significantly less likely to have been victimized over the past 12 months than currently depressed patients (12.1 vs. 35.5%). In remitted patients, living alone and low sense of mastery at baseline predicted future violent victimization. However, when combined in a multiple model, only living alone was independently associated with violent victimization (χ2 = 16.725, df = 2, p <.001, R2 = 0.221). Limitations: Our comparison of victimization rates across samples was cross-sectional. Conclusions: Since the increased risk of victimization appears to be specific for the acute depressive state, preventive interventions should target victimization in currently depressed patients. Trial registration: Netherlands Trial Register (NTR): 2599.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)405-411
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
Early online date6 Jun 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2018


The research is funded by ZONMW: The Netherlands association for Health research and Development, Health Care Efficiency Research program (project number: 171102004), awarded to J.J.M. Dekker (principal Investigator), Professor of Clinical Psychology, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

FundersFunder number
Netherlands association for Health research and Development171102004


    • Assault
    • Depression
    • Remission
    • Sense of mastery
    • Victimization
    • Violence


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