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Brazilian multicentric study of psychiatric morbidity: Methodological features and prevalence estimates

  • Naomar Almeida-Filho (a1), Jair De Jesus Mari (a2), Evandro Coutinho (a3), Josimar Farias França (a4), Jefferson Fernandes (a5), Sérgio Baxter Andreoli (a6) and Ellis D'Arrigo Busnello (a7)...
Abstract
Background

Psychiatric morbidity studies in developing countries have used diagnostic procedures of low reliability, without a clinical definition of caseness, producing descriptive data with limited application for mental health planning.

Method

A two-stage cross-sectional design (with a sample size of 6476) was conducted to estimate the prevalence of DSM–III psychiatric diagnoses in three metropolitan areas of Brazil (Brasília, São Paulo and Porto Alegre). All subjects were screened for the presence of psychopathology with a 44-item instrument (the QMPA) and a subsample was selected for a psychiatric interview.

Results

Age-adjusted prevalence of cases potentially in need of care ranged from 19% (São Paulo) to 34% (Brasília and Porto Alegre). Anxiety disorders comprised the highest prevalences (up to 18%). Alcoholism yielded the most consistent prevalence levels, around 8% in all sites. Depression showed great variation between areas: from less than 3% (São Paulo and Brasília) to 10% (Porto Alegre)

Conclusions

Overall prevalences were high in comparison with previous studies conducted in Brazil. A female excess of non-psychotic disorders (anxiety, phobias, somatisation and depression) and a male excess for alcoholism were consistently found.

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Copyright
Corresponding author
Professor N. Almeida-Filho, Instituto de Saúde Coletiva, Universidade Federal da Bahia, Rua Padre Feijo 29-4. Andar, Campus Canela, Salvador-Bahia, Brazil 40210-270
References
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The British Journal of Psychiatry
  • ISSN: 0007-1250
  • EISSN: 1472-1465
  • URL: /core/journals/the-british-journal-of-psychiatry
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Brazilian multicentric study of psychiatric morbidity: Methodological features and prevalence estimates

  • Naomar Almeida-Filho (a1), Jair De Jesus Mari (a2), Evandro Coutinho (a3), Josimar Farias França (a4), Jefferson Fernandes (a5), Sérgio Baxter Andreoli (a6) and Ellis D'Arrigo Busnello (a7)...
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