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Affective disorders in five United States communities

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 July 2009

Myrna M. Weissman*
Affiliation:
Departments of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Sociology, Yale University, New Haven, CT; Department of Psychiatry, Duke University, Durham, NC; Department of Psychiatry, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Philip J. Leaf
Affiliation:
Departments of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Sociology, Yale University, New Haven, CT; Department of Psychiatry, Duke University, Durham, NC; Department of Psychiatry, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Gary L. Tischler
Affiliation:
Departments of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Sociology, Yale University, New Haven, CT; Department of Psychiatry, Duke University, Durham, NC; Department of Psychiatry, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Dan G. Blazer
Affiliation:
Departments of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Sociology, Yale University, New Haven, CT; Department of Psychiatry, Duke University, Durham, NC; Department of Psychiatry, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Marvin Karno
Affiliation:
Departments of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Sociology, Yale University, New Haven, CT; Department of Psychiatry, Duke University, Durham, NC; Department of Psychiatry, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Martha Livingston Bruce
Affiliation:
Departments of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Sociology, Yale University, New Haven, CT; Department of Psychiatry, Duke University, Durham, NC; Department of Psychiatry, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Louis P. Florio
Affiliation:
Departments of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Sociology, Yale University, New Haven, CT; Department of Psychiatry, Duke University, Durham, NC; Department of Psychiatry, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
*
1Address for correspondence. Dr Myrna M. Weissman, College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University, 722 West 168th St – Box 14, New York, NY, 10032, USA.

Synopsis

Results on the age/sex specific prevalence of DSM-III affective disorders from the NIMH Epidemiologic Catchment Area Study (ECA), a probability sample of over 18000 adults from five United States communities, are presented. The cross-site means for bipolar disorder ranged from 0·7/100 (2 weeks) to 1–2/100 (lifetime), with a mean age of onset of 21 years and no sex difference in rates. The cross-site means for major depression ranged from 1·5/100 (2 weeks) to 4·4/ 100 (lifetime), with a mean age of onset of 27 years and higher rates in women. The cross-site means for dysthymia, a chronic condition, was 3·1/100 with a higher rate in women. There was reasonable consistency in prevalence rates among sites. The implications of these findings for understanding psychopathology are discussed.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1988

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