Panic disorder in rural Tanzania: an explorative study

  • T Nordgreen
  • OE Havik
Keywords: Panic disorder, Culture, Cognitive behaviour therapy, Low-income country


Objective: Common mental disorders constitute a considerable disease burden in low-income countries, and there is a need for acceptable and effective brief interventions for such disorders in low-income countries. This article examines cultural based interpretations of the diagnosis of panic disorder (PD) in a rural Tanzanian hospital setting through clinical work. It also examines how to adapt and apply brief cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) interventions to this setting. Method: A qualitative analysis of clinical data from ten participants in a hospital-setting in rural Tanzania. Results: The analysis suggests that the diagnosis of PD is relevant to this rural Tanzanian setting. Patients, relatives, and health personnel at the hospital accepted brief CBT interventions for PD and regarded psychoeducational information to patients as especially useful. Conclusion: A manual for brief interventions for PD may be adapted to a rural Tanzanian setting, also taking into consideration the limited financial and human resources in a rural low-income country setting.

Keywords: Panic disorder; Culture; Cognitive behaviour therapy; Low-income country


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1994-8220