Depressive symptoms among adults 18–69 years in Italy: results from the Italian behavioural risk factor surveillance system, 2007
- 217 Downloads
Little is known about the prevalence of depressive symptoms in the Italian general population, nor about help-seeking behaviours among those with depressive symptoms.
We used 2007 data from PASSI, the Italian behavioural risk factor surveillance system, based on telephone interviews of residents aged 18–69 years. A modified version of the Patient Health Questionnaire-2 was used to explore the presence of depressive symptoms. Those with symptoms were asked about whether they had sought help. Association of depressive symptoms with risk factors and self-perceived health was evaluated.
9.4% of the interviewees met the case definition. Risk factors included older age, female sex, low educational attainment, unemployment, financial problems and chronic illnesses. Of those for whom information on help-seeking was available, 47.2% did not seek any help. Depressive symptoms were associated with poorer self-perceived health.
Population-based surveillance systems tracking the prevalence of depressive symptoms and associated risk factors and behaviours may offer needed information for planning, implementing and evaluating promotion and prevention interventions capable of reducing the number of people who go on to experience depressive episodes.
KeywordsDepressive symptoms Italy Survey Adults
The authors thank the many regional referents and the regional/local coordinators who contributed to the data collection. A special thanks goes to the health care workers in the public health departments in the LHUs who conduct the interviews. Another special thanks goes to Francesca Romana Meduri and Monica Bolli for their administrative support. Finally, they wish to thank Drs Kurt Kroenke and Tara Strine for their generous advice and assistance in the development of the Italian version of the study instrument. This work was supported by the Italian Ministry of Health/National Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (grant 4393/2004-Ccm).
Conflicts of interest statement
- Alonso J, Angermeyer MC, Bernert S, Bruffaerts R, Brugha TS, Bryson H, De Girolamo G, Graaf R, Demyttenaere K, Gasquet I et al (2004a) Prevalence of mental disorders in Europe: results from the European Study of the Epidemiology of Mental Disorders (ESEMeD) project. Acta Psychiatr Scand Suppl 420:21–27. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0047.2004.00327.x PubMedGoogle Scholar
- Alonso J, Angermeyer MC, Bernert S, Bruffaerts R, Brugha TS, Bryson H, De Girolamo G, Graaf R, Demyttenaere K, Gasquet I et al (2004b) Use of mental health services in Europe: results from the European Study of the Epidemiology of Mental Disorders (ESEMeD) project. Acta Psychiatr Scand Suppl (420):47–54. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0047.2004.00330.x
- Alonso J, Angermeyer MC, Bernert S, Bruffaerts R, Brugha TS, Bryson H, De Girolamo G, Graaf R, Demyttenaere K, Gasquet I et al (2004c) Disability and quality of life impact of mental disorders in Europe: results from the European Study of the Epidemiology of Mental Disorders (ESEMeD) project. Acta Psychiatr Scand Suppl (420):38–46. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0047.2004.00329.x
- Bebbington PE (1998) The social epidemiology of clinical depression. Elsevier, AmsterdamGoogle Scholar
- Bernat DH, Resnick MD (2006) Healthy youth development: science and strategies. J Public Health Manag Pract 12(Suppl):S10–S16Google Scholar
- de Girolamo G, Polidori G, Morosini P, Scarpino V, Reda V, Serra G, Mazzi F, Alonso J, Vilagut G, Visonà G et al (2006) Prevalence of common mental disorders in Italy: results from the European Study of the Epidemiology of Mental Disorders (ESEMeD). Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol 41:853–861. doi: 10.1007/s00127-006-0097-4 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Faravelli C, Abrardi L, Bartolozzi D, Cecchi C, Cosci F, D’Adamo D, Lo Iacono B, Ravaldi C, Scarpato MA, Truglia E et al (2004) The Sesto Fiorentino Study: background, methods and preliminary results. Lifetime prevalence of psychiatric disorders in an Italian community sample using clinical interviewers. Psychother Psychosom 73:216–225. doi: 10.1159/000077740 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Health and Consumer Protection Directorate, European Commission (2005) Improving the mental health of the population. Towards a strategy on mental health for the European Union. Green paper. http://ec.europa.eu/health/ph_determinants/life_style/mental/green_paper/mental_gp_en.pdf. Accessed 25 November 2009
- Istituto Nazionale di Statistica (2006) La Rilevazione sulle Forze di Lavoro: contenuti, metodologie, organizzazione. ISTAT. http://www.istat.it/dati/catalogo/20060830_00/met_norme_06_32_%20rilevazione_forze_lavoro.pdf. Accessed 25 November 2009
- Mazzotti E, Fassone G, Picardi A, Sagoni E, Ramieri L, Lega I, Camaioni D, Abeni D, Pasquini P (2003) Il Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ) per lo screening dei disturbi psichiatrici: uno studio di validazione nei confronti dell’Intervista Clinica Strutturata per il DSM-IV asse I (SCID-I) [The Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ) for the screening of psychiatric disorders: a validation study versus the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV axis I (SCID-I)]. G Ital Psicopatol 9:235–242Google Scholar
- Meltzer H, Gill B, Petticrew M, Hinds K (1995) Physical complaints, service use, and treatment of adults with psychiatric disorders. OPC surveys of psychiatric morbidity in Great Britain. HMSO, LondonGoogle Scholar
- The American Association for Public Opinion Research (2008) Standard definitions: final dispositions of case codes and outcome rates for surveys, 5th edn. AAPOR, Lenexa. http://www.aapor.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Standard_Definitions&Template=/CM/ContentDisplay.cfm&ContentID=1273. Accessed 25 November 2009
- United States Department of Health and Human Services (1999) Mental health: a report of the Surgeon General. U.S. Public Health Service, Rockville. http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/library/mentalhealth/home.html. Accessed 25 November 2009
- U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (2002) Screening for depression: recommendations and rationale. Ann Intern Med 136:760–764Google Scholar
- Wang PS, Aguilar-Gaxiola S, Alonso J, Angermeyer MC, Borges G, Bromet EJ, Bruffaerts R, de Girolamo G, de Graaf R, Gureje O et al (2007) Use of mental health services for anxiety, mood, and substance disorders in 17 countries in the WHO world mental health surveys. Lancet 370:841–850. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(07)61414-7 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- WHO International Consortium in Psychiatric Epidemiology (2000) Cross-national comparisons of the prevalences and correlates of mental disorders. Bull World Health Organ 78:413–426Google Scholar
- Williams SM, Saxena S, McQueen DV (2005) The momentum for mental health promotion. Promot Educ 2(Suppl):6–9, 61, 67Google Scholar