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The most common treatment for major depressive disorder (MDD) is antidepressant medication (ADM). Results are reported on frequency of ADM use, reasons for use, and perceived effectiveness of use in general population surveys across 20 countries.
Face-to-face interviews with community samples totaling n = 49 919 respondents in the World Health Organization (WHO) World Mental Health (WMH) Surveys asked about ADM use anytime in the prior 12 months in conjunction with validated fully structured diagnostic interviews. Treatment questions were administered independently of diagnoses and asked of all respondents.
3.1% of respondents reported ADM use within the past 12 months. In high-income countries (HICs), depression (49.2%) and anxiety (36.4%) were the most common reasons for use. In low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), depression (38.4%) and sleep problems (31.9%) were the most common reasons for use. Prevalence of use was 2–4 times as high in HICs as LMICs across all examined diagnoses. Newer ADMs were proportionally used more often in HICs than LMICs. Across all conditions, ADMs were reported as very effective by 58.8% of users and somewhat effective by an additional 28.3% of users, with both proportions higher in LMICs than HICs. Neither ADM class nor reason for use was a significant predictor of perceived effectiveness.
ADMs are in widespread use and for a variety of conditions including but going beyond depression and anxiety. In a general population sample from multiple LMICs and HICs, ADMs were widely perceived to be either very or somewhat effective by the people who use them.
Contextually appropriate interventions delivered by primary maternal care providers (PMCPs) might be effective in reducing the treatment gap for perinatal depression.
To compare high-intensity treatment (HIT) with low-intensity treatment (LIT) for perinatal depression.
Cluster randomised clinical trial, conducted in Ibadan, Nigeria between 18 June 2013 and 11 December 2015 in 29 maternal care clinics allocated by computed-generated random sequence (15 HIT; 14 LIT). Interventions were delivered individually to antenatal women with DSM-IV (1994) major depression by trained PMCPs. LIT consisted of the basic psychosocial treatment specifications in the World Health Organization Mental Health Gap Action Programme – Intervention Guide. HIT comprised LIT plus eight weekly problem-solving therapy sessions with possible additional sessions determined by scores on the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). The primary outcome was remission of depression at 6 months postpartum (EPDS < 6).
There were 686 participants; 452 and 234 in HIT and LIT arms, respectively, with both groups similar at baseline. Follow-up assessments, completed on 85%, showed remission rates of 70% with HIT and 66% with LIT: risk difference 4% (95% CI −4.1%, 12.0%), adjusted odds ratio 1.12 (95% CI 0.73, 1.72). HIT was more effective for severe depression (odds ratio 2.29; 95% CI 1.01, 5.20; P = 0.047) and resulted in a higher rate of exclusive breastfeeding. Infant outcomes, cost-effectiveness and adverse events were similar.
Except among severely depressed perinatal women, we found no strong evidence to recommend high-intensity in preference to low-intensity psychological intervention in routine primary maternal care.
The brain drain of medical professionals from lower-income to higher-income countries contributes to the current inequity that characterises access to mental healthcare by those in need across the world and hinders efforts to scale up mental health services in resource-constrained settings, especially in Nigeria and other West African countries. The migration of skilled workers is driven by a combination of the globalisation of the labour market and the ability of highly resourced countries to attract and retain specialists from poorer countries. If we are to ameliorate the worldwide shortage of mental health professionals, we need to find innovative ways of attracting young doctors into psychiatric training in all countries. We must also introduce measures to improve health worker retention in low- and middle-income countries.
Background: Chronic pain is quite common in the elderly and is often associated with comorbid depression, limitation of functioning and reduced quality of life. The aim of this study was to ascertain whether there is a differential risk of depression among persons with pain in different anatomical sites and to determine which pain conditions are independent risk factors for depression.
Methods: Data are from the Ibadan Study of Ageing (ISA), a community-based longitudinal survey of persons aged 65 years and older from eight contiguous Yoruba-speaking states in Nigeria (n = 2152). Data were collected in face-to-face interviews; depression was assessed using the World Mental Health initiative version of the Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI) while chronic pain was assessed by self-report (response rate = 74%).
Results: Estimates of persistent pain (lasting more than six months), in different anatomical sites range from 1.3% to 12.8%, with the commonest being joint pains (12.8%), neck or back (spinal) pain (7.6%) and chest pain (3.0%). Significantly more pain conditions were reported by females and by respondents who were aged over 80 years. The risk for depression was higher in respondents with spinal, joint and chest pain. However, only chest pain was independently associated with depression after adjustments were made for pains at other sites and for functional disability.
Conclusion: Our data suggests that, among elderly persons, there is a differential association of depression with chronic pain that is related to the anatomical site of the pain.
Adverse childhood experiences have been associated with a variety of
mental health problems in adult life.
To examine whether this reported link between childhood experiences and
mental health disorders in adult life applies in a Sub-Saharan African
setting where cultural and family attributes may be different.
A multistage random sampling was used in the Nigerian Survey of Mental
Health and Well-Being (NSMHW) to select respondents for face-to-face
interviews. Assessments of family-related adverse childhood experiences
and lifetime mental health disorders were conducted with the Composite
International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI 3.0).
Almost half of the respondents had experienced an adverse childhood
experience within the context of the family before they were 16 years of
age. Associations between adverse childhood experiences and adult mental
health disorders were few and were attenuated when clustering of adverse
childhood experience and disorder comorbidities were accounted for. There
was an elevated likelihood of adult substance use disorders among
individuals who had experienced family violence and neglect or abuse.
Parental psychopathology was associated with a significantly increased
risk for developing mood disorders.
Adverse childhood experiences reflecting violence in the family, parental
criminality and parental mental illness and substance misuse were more
likely to have significant mental health consequences in adulthood.
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