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Incidence of psychotic disorders in immigrant groups to the Netherlands

  • J.-P. Selten (a1), N. Veen (a1), W. Feller (a1), J. D. Blom (a1), D. Schols (a2), W. Camoenië (a2), J. Oolders (a2), M. Van Der Velden (a2), H. W. Hoek (a2), V. M. Vladár Rivero (a2), Y. Van Der Graaf (a3) and R. Kahn (a1)...

Abstract

Background

Previous reports on the incidence of schizophrenia in immigrant groups to The Netherlands were based on hospital data.

Aims

To compare the incidence of psychotic disorders in the immigrant groups to that in natives.

Method

Two-year first-contact incidence study in The Hague.

Results

The risks of schizophrenia, schizophreniform or schizoaffective disorder (DSM–IV criteria) were increased for subjects born in Morocco (gender and age-adjusted relative risk=4.5; 95% CI 1.4–8.5), Surinam (relative risk=3.2; 1.8–5.7), The Netherlands Antilles (relative risk=2.9; 0.9–9.5) and other non-Western countries (relative risk=2.4; 1.3–4.7). This risk was also increased for Moroccans (relative risk=8.0; 2.6–24.5) and Surinamese (relative risk=5.5; 2.5–11.9) of the second generation. The risks for Turkish immigrants, first or second generation, and for immigrants from Western countries were not significantly increased.

Conclusions

This study indicates that the incidence of schizophrenia is increased in several, but not all, immigrant groups to The Netherlands. It is possible that factors associated with a process of rapid westernisation precipitate schizophrenia in people who are genetically at risk.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

Dr J. P. Selten, Department of Psychiatry, University Hospital, PO Box 85500, 3508 GA Utrecht, The Netherlands. Tel: 00 31 30 250 8180; fax: 00 31 30 2505443; e-mail: j.p.selten@psych.azu.nl

Footnotes

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Declaration of interest

Supported by the Stanley Foundation.

Footnotes

References

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Incidence of psychotic disorders in immigrant groups to the Netherlands

  • J.-P. Selten (a1), N. Veen (a1), W. Feller (a1), J. D. Blom (a1), D. Schols (a2), W. Camoenië (a2), J. Oolders (a2), M. Van Der Velden (a2), H. W. Hoek (a2), V. M. Vladár Rivero (a2), Y. Van Der Graaf (a3) and R. Kahn (a1)...
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