Stigma on epileptic patients attending the outpatient clinic of Soba University Hospital and the National Center for Neurological Science (NCNS) Khartoum, Sudan
Introduction: epilepsy is one of the most prevalent neurological conditions for people of different age group, race, gender and socio-economic status in various nations, affecting 50 million people around the world; 80% of them living in developing countries. In Sudan, literature has well documented epilepsy stigma and it related elements of labelling, negative typecasting, isolation, devaluing and discrimination that are significantly affecting patients living standards and social life. This study focuses on understanding the prevailing, different types of stigma among people living with epilepsy (PWE) in Sudan and to determine its frequency in connection with demographic factors and patients coping ability of PWE.
Methods: a health facility-based cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted on 270 people between the ages of 16-70years who are affected by epilepsy in an outpatient clinic. Standardized questionnaires were used to interview the patients with assistance gotten from their relative where necessary. The data is analyzed using SPSS version 20. The study was conducted in the outpatient clinic of The National Center for Neurological Sciences (NCNS), Ibrahim-Malik Teaching Hospital Sudan.
Results: the study realized that 16.6% of the patient had a positive self-stigma score, half of them having coaching stigma and 25% courtesy stigma. One third of people with epilepsy had poor coping score that was strongly determined by self- stigma and courtesy stigma score.
Conclusion: parents and relatives related sigma is a major problem facing people of epilepsy in Sudan; thus, raising such group awareness and education about the disease can markedly improve the quality of life of people with epilepsy in Sudan.