Morbid grief I: Are close relatives of the "redterror" victims of Addis Ababa still suffering from a morbid grief and other complications of bereavement?

  • Abdulreshid Abdulahi Bekry
  • Mohamme Haji Hyder Ali



To assess whether close relatives of the "red-terror" victims of the Ethiopian revolution of late 1970's are still suffering from a morbid grief and other complications of bereavement, a study was carried out in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, between February and May 1995. Ninety one close relatives (sample I ) have rated themselves with the Texas Inventory of Grief 18 years after bereavement and 89(97.8%) of them were found to have a profound grief reaction. Compared to 87 non-bereaving control group (sample II), they have scored significantly higher (P <0.001) on the General Health Questionnaire-30 items version (GHQ-30), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and State Anxiety Inventory (SAI). The correlation (r=+0.843, P<0.001) between the brief (BTIG) and the expanded (ETIG) forms of Texas Inventory of Grief has indicated that the two forms are equally reliable and useful in measuring grief reaction. All the rating scales are self-rating, Amharic translated with acceptable face validity, but they are not yet concurrently validated with their corresponding English versions. BTIG was recommended as a useful paper-and-pencil screening instrument with an arbitrary cut-off point of 16.24 (i.e. - 1.96 Z- score) for this particular group and it was suggested that respondents scoring 16.24 and above which amounts to 89(97.8%) be considered as probable cases of morbid grief and as candidates for bereavement counselling. [Ethiop. J. Health Dev. 1997;11(3):241-249]


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