Psychiatric disorders in Sardinian immigrants to Paris: a comparison with Parisians and Sardinians resident in Sardinia
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Background The aim of the present study was to compare the prevalence of ICD–10 psychiatric disorders in a community sample of subjects of Sardinian origin resident in Paris (here “immigrants”), of the general Parisian population (“Parisians”) and of Sardinians resident in Sardinia (“Sardinians”). Methods The sample of immigrants was obtained by contacting a fifth of all households with a Sardinian surname in Paris telephone directories. The other samples have already been partially described in previous studies. All subjects were interviewed using the CIDIS, a shortened version of the structured WHO interview CIDI. Results High or very high response rates were achieved in all studies. The final sample sizes were: 153 immigrants, 2,260 Parisians and 1,040 Sardinians. Immigrants showed high rates of depressive disorders, as did Parisians, and high rates of anxiety disorders, as did Sardinians. The immigrants' offspring (second-generation immigrants) seemed to be particularly at risk for depression, drug-abuse and bulimia. Elderly Sardinians who had returned to Sardinia after a long period of emigration showed an increased risk of dysthymia. The presence of a confidential relationship had a protective effect. Conclusions The results are consistent with previous findings which suggest a greater risk of anxiety disorders in Southern Europe and of depression in Northern European countries. Immigrants in this study seem to present a particularly unfavourable pattern of mental disorders compared to both origin and host populations. The role of social support, use of mental health services and social conditions of second-generation immigrants should be analysed in greater depth.
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