Depression, Social Support, Executive Functioning, Functionality, and Quality of Life in Institutionalized Elderly People

Anabela Ribeiro, Beatriz Rosa, Jorge Oliveira, Paulo Lopes


Aim: Our aim was to study the executive functioning, functionality, and quality of life of institutionalized old aged persons and to determine the potential roles of self-reported depression and satisfaction with social support on these domains. Method: The sample comprised 36 volunteers (13 males and 23 females) aged between 71 and 94 years. The measures used consisted of well-established battery of neuropsychological tests. A comparative study was performed. Results: Participants with depressive symptoms shown impaired executive functioning. Cognitive flexibility, functionality in instrumental activities of daily living, and quality of life are more affected in participants with higher levels of depression that also report higher levels of satisfaction with social support. Conclusion: This result is intriguing and may highlight the relevance of considering not only depression, but also factors related to social isolation and loneliness in the explanation of cognitive performance, functionality, and quality of life.


aging; social support; depression; executive functioning; quality of life