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Anais Brasileiros de Dermatologia

Print version ISSN 0365-0596


TABORDA, Maria-Laura V. V.; WEBER, Magda Blessmann  and  FREITAS, Elaine Silveira. Assessment of the prevalence of psychological distress in patients with psychocutaneous disorder dermatoses. An. Bras. Dermatol. [online]. 2005, vol.80, n.4, pp.351-354. ISSN 0365-0596.

BACKGROUND: It is estimated that emotional aspects are involved in one third of patients with skin diseases. OBJECTIVE: To verify the prevalence of psychological distress in patients with psychocutaneous disorder dermatoses (PDD), as well as to relate the degree of psychological distress to the disease, duration of disease progression, gender and age of patients. METHODS: A cross-sectional descriptive study. It included 76 male and female patients presenting PDD; age range 15-60 years. The patients answered the SRQ-20 (Self-Reported Questionnaire) prepared by the WHO to screen patients for mental disorders. RESULTS: The presence of psychological distress was observed in 25% of patients; in that, the females presented OR=14 to positive SRQ in respect to males. The chi-square test did not show statistically significant association between skin disease and presence of psychological distress. Taking in to account only patients with acne vulgaris and vitiligo, it could be observed that the latter presented higher levels of psychological distress than the former (OR=8.9; p=0.034). CONCLUSIONS: These data confirm the high prevalence of psychological distress in patients with some dermatoses. Moreover, they suggest that chronic diseases presenting esthetically unpleasant appearance, such as vitiligo, may be associated to a higher level of psychological distress in this population. There was no significant association between dermatoses in general and psychological distress although a strong trend could be observed.

Keywords : Acne vulgaris; Stress, psychological; Hypopigmentation.

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