Pilot investigation into the sickness response to influenza vaccination in adults: Effect of depression and anxiety

Jessica A. Harper, Charles South, Madhukar H. Trivedi, Marisa S. Toups

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Objective To determine whether depressed or anxious patients experience greater affective change than mentally healthy individuals following influenza vaccination. Methods Participants (n = 112) completed the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) before influenza vaccination and 1–2 days post-vaccination (M = 32.3 h). Pre- and post-vaccination PANAS scores were compared using two-tailed, paired-samples t-tests. Change in positive affect between participants with depression or anxiety and those without was compared using two-way ANOVA. Follow up positive affect was further examined using multiple linear regression. Results Positive affect decreased following vaccination (M = 2.18, 95% CI [1.07, 3.29], t(111) = 3.89, p < 0.001) for all participants and was more pronounced for those with anxiety or depression (F(1, 110) = 7.51, p = 0.009). Similarly, predicted follow up affect score was higher for those without a mental health conditions (β = 3.67, 95% CI [1.18, 6.16], t(103) = 2.92, p = 0.004). Conclusions These data suggest that influenza vaccine has a greater effect on affect in patients with depression and anxiety than in mentally healthy individuals. This effect was focused on positive affect, suggesting that influenza vaccine induced inflammation may be best suited to examine alterations in positive affect and positive valence systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)56-61
Number of pages6
JournalGeneral Hospital Psychiatry
StatePublished - Sep 2017


  • Inflammation
  • Influenza vaccine
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Positive affect
  • Sickness behavior

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Pilot investigation into the sickness response to influenza vaccination in adults: Effect of depression and anxiety'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this