Psychiatric Morbidity (Depression And Anxiety) In Children With Some Dermatological Diseases At Derna, Libya.

  • M Al-Okali
  • O EI-Shourbagy
  • SM Wassif


Background: Whenever children are sick there is a psychological component to the illness. Objectives: to assess depression and anxiety in children with some skin diseases. Methodology: This study included 100 children with ages ranged from 6 to 14 years. They were divided into 50 apparently healthy children (used as a control group) and 50 patients (children suffering from psoriasis, acne, urticaria, atopic dermatitis and alopecia), attended the dermatology outpatient clinic at Al Wahda Hospital and Community Health Center, Dema, Libya, from I st Jan. 2006 to May 30,2006. For all children the following were done: full medical history and clinical examination, D-test for depression for children and anxiety manifest scale for children. Results: There was a significant difference between the mean scores of anxiety in skin disease children (19.9 ± 6.4) and the healthy control (13.2 ± 5.6, P<0.001). The mean scores on anxiety test were significantly higher in children with psoriasis (27 ± 4.3, p <0.01), with alopecia areata (20.2 ± 6.6, p <0.01), with urticaria (20 ± 6.8, p<0.01), with atopic dermatitis (19.8 ± 7.7, p<0.01), and in children with acne vulgaris (18.8 ± 7.5, P < 0.01) than the healthy children. There was a significant difference between the mean scores of depression in all skin diseased children (12.1 ± 4.4) and the control group (9.7 ± 3.3, P<0.0l). The mean scores on the depression test were significantly higher in children with psoriasis (16.3 ± 4.1, p<0.0l), with urticaria (14.1± 4.6, p<0.0l), with atopic dermatitis (12.7 ± 5.2, p<0.0l), with acne (12.2 ± 6.1, p<0.02), but not in children with alopecia (9.6 ± 5.2, P >0.05) than the healthy children. A statistical difference concerning sex was not found except in children with psoriasis on the depression score. Conclusion: the findings of the present study highlight the importance of recognizing psychiatric co morbidity among dermatology children. Key words: dermatology children, psychiatric co morbidity, psoriasis, alopecia

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