Middle East Current Psychiatry

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EISSN : 2090-5416
Total articles ≅ 108
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Zainab Ifthikar, Saima Sajjad Fakih, Saumy Johnson, Johnson Alex
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28, pp 1-7; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00127-3

Background In recent times, COVID-19 has been recognized as a public health emergency and thus far, most papers published on it are focused only on the clinical characteristics of infected patients. This pandemic has also made phenomenal emotional impact among the young and the old. We aimed to find out the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the psychological well-being of medical students in a University at Riyadh. Results There were 309 participants in the study. Out of them 44% did not have PTSD, 29% had score more than 37 which might contribute to immune suppression, in 18.4% PTSD was a clinical concern and 8.6% had probable PTSD. Female participants were the majority in the group and they also had higher chance of having consequences than the male counterparts (P < 0.001). Avoidance score between male and female gender was significantly different. Conclusion COVID-19 pandemic has not just affected the physiological functioning of the affected individuals but also has had a probable post-traumatic stress disorder among young college students. Screening for psychological well-being and the treatment for PTSD is imperative in college, school and general population.
Rayan Hisham Salaheldin Shazali,
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28, pp 1-5; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00113-9

Background Blindness has profound consequences for the victim, family, and society. The impact of vision loss on daily life activities could lead to psychological stress. Early treatment of depression may reduce the added disability that is associated with vision loss. This study aimed to assess the extent and associated factors with depression among the Sudanese blind people in Khartoum, Sudan. A cross-section facility-based study was conducted, in which depression among the participants was assessed using the Beck Depression Inventory Scale. A chi-square test was implemented to determine the relationship between categorical variables and the significance level for all analyses was set at p < 0.05. Results A total of 185 participants were included in the study. Out of them, 84.3% were male and near half of the participants (42.2%) were born blind. The prevalence of depression among the participants was 11.4%. There were significantly higher rates of depression in those who were illiterate (χ2 = 6.233, p = 0.044) and in those whose loss of vision was due to accidents or traumatic causes and loss of vision due to accidents or traumatic causes (χ2 = 12.840, p = 0.002). There was significantly lower rate of depression in those who were born with blindness compared to others (χ2 = 10.504, p = 0.005). Conclusions People who were born blind have a lower rate of depression and people who lost their sight due to trauma have a higher rate of depression, and therefore, requiring more psychiatric support. Despite the relatively low percentage of depression, establishing programs for early identification and combating depression among the blind population in our setting is highly recommended.
Mostafa Farahbakhsh, Maryam Nejad Asgari, Vahab Aslrahimi, Azam Hemmati, Ilnaz Iranzad,
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00111-x

Background The incidence rate of suicide has been increased in Iran over the past decades especially in East Azerbaijan Province which there are limited studies on suicide. We aimed to investigate the 12-year trend of suicide and demographic characteristics in East Azerbaijan Province during the period 2007–2018. We obtained the data on the suicide mortality and socio-demographic status from the Death Registry Information System (DRIS) and compared with legal medicine suicide statistics during the study period. Results A total of 2422 and 1783 suicide cases were reported by legal medicine and DRIS (average incidence rate 5.94 vs 4.4 per 100,000) in the 12-year period from 2007 to 2018, respectively. The suicide rate in males was more than two times that of females. The mean and median age of suicide was 34.07 and 31 years, respectively. The most common suicide method was hanging (51.9%). The incidence rate of suicide cases was decreasing between 2007 and 2014, however from 2015 to 2018 has been increased. Conclusions The incidence rate of suicide in this province has been increasing with a smooth slope. Community-based programs and measures should be taken to stop the growth rate of suicide.
Habibeh Barzegar, Mostafa Farahbakhsh, Hosein Azizi, Sepideh Aliashrafi, Hossein Dadashzadeh, Ali Fakhari
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28, pp 1-7; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00110-y

Background We aimed to identify the distribution and effective factors of agoraphobic situations and how they relate to panic disorder. We included confirmed 61 patients with agoraphobia in Bozorgmehr Psychiatric Clinic of Tabriz. Multiple logistic regression was used to measure panic disorder, agoraphobia, and effective factors. Results The average age of participants was 37.26 (SD 10.9), including 68.85% female and 31.15% male. Out of those, around three-fourths, 45 (73.7%), had panic disorder or comorbidity at least by one psychiatric disorder. Among various types of agoraphobia situations, leaving 34.63% and being 32.63% home alone had the most occurrences. A trend was observed between the rising of agoraphobia situations and panic risk. The final analysis was found a significant relationship between being bathroom alone (OR = 1.3; CI 1.12–1.56), having more than one psychiatric disorder (AOR = 8.25; CI 1.12–27.17), and panic risk. Conclusions We found leaving home alone, being home alone, being in a crowd, and standing in line as the most common agoraphobic situations. There appears agoraphobia and panic disorders are poorly understood in primary mental health care systems. The screening and treating programs are needed for increasing the quality of life and early identification of these disorders.
, Sana Javed, Kumar Karki, Akshita Kaushal
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28, pp 1-7; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00119-3

Background When COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic in March 2020, almost all countries implemented strict lockdowns and home quarantine orders in order to prevent spread of the virus. These implementations have severely affected the mental health of people all around the world especially the elderly, who are already physically and mentally fragile. There has been an escalation in the prevalence of depression, suicide, anxiety, substance abuse, domestic abuse, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Main body The aim of our review was to highlight PTSD in the elderly population who has recovered from COVID-19 infection and come up with some recommendations for the future. A thorough literature review was conducted focusing on the impact of COVID-19 on development and progression of PTSD during the pandemic. Conclusion Increased allocation of resources by various government and private stakeholders is necessary to prepare for the long-term implications on mental health from the current and future pandemics.
, Sayer Al-Azzam, Ahmed Alhusban, Khawla Nuseir
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00115-7

The COVID-19 pandemic is taking many lives every day. It affects literally all aspects of life and changes humanity communication tools, mobility, lifestyle, and feasibly their level of perceived stress and depression. The present study aims to investigate the psychological health status in terms of perceived stress and depression among the UAE population in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is a cross-sectional questionnaire-based study in the UAE during the lockdown period of the COVID-19 pandemic. Validated assessment tools (PHQ-9 and PSS) were used to assess depression and perceived stress, respectively. Data were analyzed using categorical data and mean± SD for scores of perceived stress, and depression scales were calculated. The SPSS statistical software (version 24.0) was used for data analysis purposes. Our findings revealed that the pandemic has significantly influenced the daily routine and psychological health. Depressive symptoms were prevalent in 47.8% of the participants. A concerned percent of participants around 84% were anxious. Age, gender, school attendance, and the impact of the pandemic on work performance were the major factors of developing depression and perceived stress symptoms. The COVID-19 pandemic has a considerable negative psychological impact on the public in the UAE. The importance of the current study also came from the fact that only very few or no study has holistically evaluated the psychological state of the public during the lockdown in the UAE. The figures that reflect the depression and the perceived stress level among the public during the lockdown also struck our attention. Almost half of the participants in this study suffered from depression. Also, approximately 85% of the same were anxious during the lockdown. These figures should not be overlooked when further psychological assessment studies are conducted.
, Razan Alotaibi, Raneem Al Saqer, Njoud Alharbi, Maram Alotaibi, Reema Musllet, Rana Alraqibah
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28, pp 1-10; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00109-5

Background University students use caffeine to cope with stress in spite of its adverse effects. The purpose of this study is to explore caffeine consumption among university students in Saudi Arabia, as well as its correlation with stress and caffeine intoxication. This cross-sectional study examined a convenience sample of 547 students at Princess Nourah Bint Abdulrahman University (PNU). A self-administrated questionnaire was used to assess caffeine consumption in milligrams per day, stress was assessed by the perceived stress scale (PSS), and caffeine intoxication was assessed using the DSM-5 criteria. Results The mean total caffeine consumption was 424.69 ± 385.31 mg/day. High levels of caffeine consumption were found among students of non-health colleges and students who were undiagnosed with psychiatric disorders (p values <0.040 and 0.027, respectively). A significant positive correlation was found between caffeine consumption and perceived stress (p<0.045). Only 13.26% of all participants fulfilled the DSM-5 criteria for caffeine use disorder. The majority of participants showed moderate and high stress levels (69.9% and 18.7%). Conclusion This study revealed high caffeine consumption and perceived stress levels among female undergraduate students with a significant positive association between them. The results emphasize the importance of educational campaigns about caffeine consumption and intoxication. They also encourage the development of stress management programs. Longitudinal studies need to be designed for evidence-based intervention.
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28, pp 1-14; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00108-6

Background Burnout is defined as a syndrome resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed. It is characterised by feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion, increased mental distance from one’s job and reduced professional efficacy. The COVID-19 pandemic has created unexpected demands on healthcare systems worldwide and they have experienced numerous stressors. As the coping is one of the stressors management strategies that may affect burnout, this is a descriptive cross-sectional study aimed to estimate the frequency and level of burnout and its association with coping strategies among physicians and nurses in Saudi Arabia during the COVID-19 Pandemic using Copenhagen Burnout Inventory and Brief-COPE. Results Overall, 403 healthcare providers were recruited (85 physicians, 318 nurses). Personal, work-related and client-related burnout were detected among 67.5%, 68% and 58.3% of the respondents, respectively. The mean score for adaptive coping was (27.6 ± 10.3, median: 29 IQR: 14.0) out of 48, and the mean score for maladaptive coping was (14.2 ± 6.81, median: 14 IQR: 8.0) out of 36. Some factors associated with burnout were participants’ age group, professional position, number of family members and years of experience in the medical field. The personal, work-related and client-related burnout had inverse correlations with the overall adaptive coping category. Conclusion The frequency of burnout during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly among nurses, was significant. Burnout was also frequent among both the younger age group and those with fewer years of experience. Some predictors were identified as having a close person infected with COVID-19, being assigned to treat COVID-19 patients, longer working hours, having sleeping hours affected by the pandemic and experiencing verbal or physical abuse from patients. In addition to a significant correlation between the adaptive coping category and the three burnout dimensions.
, Javid Ahmad, Manzoor Ahmed Wani, Irfan Ullah, Shah Faisal Ahmad Tarfarosh, Shariq Rashid Masoodi, Rodrigo Ramalho
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28, pp 1-6; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00107-7

Background The aim of the present study was to compare the presence of psychiatric disorders in people with hyperthyroidism and euthyroid patients attending the Endocrinology Outpatient Department at the Shri Maharaja Hari Singh Hospital in Kashmir, India. Seventy-five patients with hyperthyroidism and an equal number of euthyroid patients participated in the study. Participants were selected using stratified random sampling. All patients were female. There was no significant difference between the two groups in terms of demographic features. Hormonal screening was performed by immunoassay and haemagglutination method. For the mental health assessment, the Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI), Hamilton Depression Rating Scale [HAM-D], and Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale [HAM-A] were used. Results There was a higher prevalence of psychiatric disorders among the hyperthyroidism group (60% versus 34.7%). In particular, there was a higher prevalence of major depressive disorder, suicidality, generalised anxiety disorder, panic attacks, and agoraphobia. In some cases, the prevalence of a psychiatric disorder diminished after endocrinological treatment. Conclusions Screening patients with hyperthyroid disorders for psychiatric symptoms and disorders, and providing timely care when necessary, can go a long way in improving the quality of life of this population. It is imperative to establish routine screening and timely care of mental health symptoms and disorders in patients with hyperthyroidism.
Khaled A. M. Elbeh, Yasser M. Elserogy, Menna F. Hamid,
Middle East Current Psychiatry, Volume 28, pp 1-8; doi:10.1186/s43045-021-00106-8

Background Epilepsy has significant effects on the behavior of most people who suffer it. In some cases, the seizure activity itself is manifested as a brief change in behavior that might appear unusual to the casual observer. Evidence also suggests that epilepsy can affect behavior when seizures are not occurring. Descriptions of inter-ictal behavior in people with epilepsy have a long and controversial history. The study aims to assess the personality disorders among epileptic patients and impact of the severity of epilepsy on personality traits. Methods: This study is conducted upon 90 patients presented at outpatient clinic of epilepsy in Assiut University Hospital diagnosed as having epilepsy versus 40 cross-matched healthy controls. Patient group were classified into two groups (refractory versus controlled groups). All patients and control were subjected to (1) detailed medical interview. (2) Assessment of intelligence using The Arabic Version of Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale. (3) Conventional EEG study. (4) The Arabic Version of The Structured interview for the five-factor model of personality. Results A relationship was found between personality traits and the severity of epilepsy. When patients have more severe epilepsy, they often have a high seizure frequency, they use more antiepileptic medications. It is likely that in those patients the need for control is usually high (because seizures mean a loss of control). Regarding the five-factor model of personality which we used to assess the personality traits of our selected studied samples, we found that the five main domains of the scale which are neuroticism, extraversion, openness to experience, agreeableness and conscientiousness differ markedly between the two groups of our patients. We found neuroticism was markedly increased at the refractory epileptic patients than the controlled epileptic ones, while extraversion, openness to experience, agreeableness, and conscientiousness increased at the controlled epileptic patients than the refractory epileptic ones. Conclusion Patients with epilepsy have raised scores for several personality traits also those personality traits are different in patients with refractory and controlled epilepsy. Also, those personality traits are different compared with a control group from the general population.
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