Shanzah Zubair*, Shaista Tahir, Shgufta Aftab, Phool Nimra Javed, Dr. Rabia Javed, Dr. Mehnaz Gondal


Background: Depression is a serious medical, psychological and social illness. Disease and hospitalization are the two major inducers of this condition. Depression in hospitalized patients not only halts the patient's personal and social activities but also worsens the prognosis of their diseases under treatment. The present study was carried out to observe the frequency of unrecognized depression among admitted patients of DHQ Teaching Hospital Gujranwala. Methods: We conducted a 2 months cross-sectional study from 1st May 2019 to 1st July 2019 on the admitted patients of Medicine, Surgery and Gynaecology/Obstetrics wards in the DHQ Teaching Hospital, Gujranwala. Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) was used as data collection tool and data was analysed using SPSS. Using descriptive statistics, frequency of unrecognized depression, the various psychological symptoms and mean PHQ scores were calculated and compared between the patients of the three wards using chi-square test keeping a p-value of less than 0.05 as statistically significant. Results: The mean age of the respondents was 38.3±17.67. Frequency of unrecognized depression came out to be 68.2%. Mean PHQ score was found to be 8.92±6.22 (mild depression). Out of total 126 participants, 36(28.5%) reported mild depression, 27(21.4%) were suffering from moderate, 15(11.9%) with moderately severe while 8(6.3%) came up severe depression. Mean PHQ scores among patients of Medicine, Surgery and Gynaecology/Obstetrics wards were 9.6±6.5, 8.9± 6.5 and 6.9±4.4 respectively and no statistically significant difference was seen giving a p-value of more than 0.05. Lethargy was the most common symptom (80.1%) and suicidal tendency was the least common one (33.3%). Majority of the participants (71.4%) claimed no difficulty with depressive symptoms. Conclusion: Majority of the admitted patients were suffering from unrecognized mild depression. No statistically significant difference was seen among the patients of different wards. There is a need to find out the various causes of depression in hospitalized patients and to look for ways to address this critical illness otherwise it may lead to serious consequences.

Keywords: Unrecognized Depression, Hospitalized patients, PHQ-9 Questionnaire.

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