Background: Psychosocial factors have shown independent predictive value in the development of cardiovascular diseases. Although there is strong evidence to support the role of psychosocial factors in cardiovascular mortality, there is a scarcity of knowledge about how these factors are related. Therefore, we investigated the relationship between depression, anxiety, education, social isolation and mortality 7.5 years after cardiac surgery. Methods: After informed consent, 180 patients undergoing cardiac surgery between July 2000 and May 2001 were prospectively enrolled and followed for ten years. During the follow-up period, the patients were contacted annually by mail. Anxiety (Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, STAI-S/STAI-T), depression (Beck Depression Inventory, BDI) and the number and reason for rehospitalizations were assessed each year. Those patients who did not respond were contacted by telephone, and national re Results: During a median follow-up of 7.6 years (25th to 75th percentile, 7.4 to 8.1 years), the mortality rate was 23.6% (95% confidence interval [CI] 17.3-29.9; 42 deaths). In a Cox regression model, the risk factors associated with an increased risk of mortality were a higher EUROSCORE (points; Adjusted Hazard Ratio (AHR): 1.30, 95%CI:1.07-1.58)), a higher preoperative STAI-T score (points; AHR:1.06, 95%CI 1.02-1.09), lower education level (school years; AHR:0.86, 95% CI:0.74-0.98), and the o Conclusions: Our results suggest that the assessment of psychosocial factors, particularly anxiety and education may help identify patients at an increased risk for long-term mortality after cardiac surgery.