Annals of African Medicine
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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 179-184

Depression in patients with epilepsy in Northwestern Nigeria: Prevalence and clinical correlates

1 Department of Psychiatry, Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria
2 Department of Medicine, Neurology Unit, Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria
3 Department of Psychiatry, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Calabar, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Shakirah Desola Owolabi
Department of Psychiatry, Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Bayero University, PMB 3452, Kano
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1596-3519.194279

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Background: The impact of seizure disorder on people living with epilepsy (PWE) is worsened by the occurrence of comorbid psychiatric disorders, such as depression, which have been found commonly in PWE. Despite the dire consequences comorbid depression has on PWE, it still remains underdiagnosed and undertreated. Objective: To determine the prevalence of depression and associated clinical factors in PWE in Northwestern Nigeria. Materials and Methods: A total of 255 consecutive patients with epilepsy aged 18 years and above, from two health facilities, were recruited in this cross-sectional study. Following completion of a structured proforma detailing sociodemographic and seizure characteristics, Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview was administered to diagnose depression in the patients. Results: A total of 255 patients, with a mean age of 32 years (standard deviation = 1.31), comprising 147 (57.6%) males and 108 (42.4%) females were studied. Majority (79.2%) of the patients had primarily generalized seizure type. Overall, depressive disorder was present in 52 (20.4%) patients. A significant association was found between previous hospitalization for epilepsy (P = 0.009), increased frequency of seizures, (P = 0.004), and prolonged duration of epilepsy, (P = 0.006). The independent predictors of depression included duration of epilepsy (P = 0.0001), previous hospitalization for epilepsy (P = 0.011), and frequency of seizures (P = 0.028). Conclusion: Depression was common in PWE. Female gender, previous hospitalization for epilepsy, increased frequency of seizures and prolonged duration of epilepsy were associated with depression in PWE. Previous hospitalization for epilepsy, increased frequency of seizures, and prolonged duration of epilepsy were independent predictors of depression.

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