Medicines, anxiety and depression.

Luiz Miguel Santiago, Maria Glória Neto, Paula Miranda, Inês Rosendo, Liliana Constantino, Catarina Matias, Tiago Santos, Catarina Neves, Maria Prazeres Francisco


To ascertain the opinion about anxiety, depression and the medicines to treat them by gender, labour activity and age.validated questionnaire; patients attending a Central Portugal Health Centre; doctors and nurses that proposed the questionnaire to all attending patients. Cross sectional observational study, by anonymous and secret self-fulfilment, in a convenience sample drawn from a population composed by all those attending the Health Centre between the 22nd June and the 3rd July (both inclusive) 2009. Descriptive and inferential statistics were performed by means of a SPSS 11.0 statistical package. Age groups were defined as: < 36 years, 36-55 years, =56 years and professional activity groups as non-actives (students, retired and unemployed) and actives (housewives, and workers in primary, secondary and tertiary sectors).A n = 281 sample was studied age distribution of < 36 years = 47,7%, 36-55 years = 36,7% and = 56 years = 15,6%, mostly active (69,4% actives) and predominantly female (71,6% women). Age distribution is normal (Kolmogorov-Smirnov Z = 1,644 2 tailed p = 0,009). As results of agreement vs disagreement, showing the significant differences, 'In general medicines for anxiety and for depression are capable of making me feel well' (71,4% vs 15,2%, p = 0,035 by age group), 'In general medicines can relieve the unpleasant sensations caused by day by day stress of actual society' (67,7% vs 22,6%, ns), 'If necessary medicines can relieve my anxiety or depression problems' (52,0% vs 34,1%, p = 0,000 by gender) and 'Anxiety and depression problems are displays of body illnesses' (42,8% vs 33,2%, ns). There is a majority of disagreement for 'In general medicines can, by themselves cure depression or anxiety' (72,5% vs 20,7%, p = 0,013 by sex), 'In general medicines for anxiety or depression can help change the way one sees the problems' (49,4% vs 43,4%, p = 0,041 by age group, p = 0,004 by sex, p = 0,002 by group of professional activity), 'I can feel good just by taking medicines' (71,4% vs 19,8%, p =0,008 by sex, p = 0,006 by professional activity group) and 'Medicines can bring more joy to my life' (58,5% vs 23,9%, p = 0,008 by sex, p = 0,006 by professional activity group). Anxiety problems and depression problems are demonstrations of body diseases, 42,8% vs 33,2%, ns).The pharmacological treatment for anxiety or depression must be individualised by sex, gender, age and activity of patients. In general medicines are judged capable of curing anxiety and depression problems but in the particular own case their activity is considered. Anxiety problems and depression problems are considered as manifestations of the body's disease.

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