Life stress and depression in a tribal area of Pakistan

N. Husain, I. B. Chaudhry, M. A. Afridi, B. Tomenson, F. Creed

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Background: Depression is common in Pakistan but no research on this subject has been reported from the North West Frontier Province (NWFP), host to numerous Afghan refugees. Aims: To measure depressive symptoms and associated features in a population-based sample. Method: A Pushto translation of the Self Reporting Questionnaire (SRQ) was administered to 471 adults living in a village in one of the federally administered tribal areas. Respondents were also assessed with a life events checklist for social problems, a social support questionnaire and the Brief Disability Questionnaire. Results: Sixty per cent (95/158) of women and 45% (140/313) of men scored 9 or more on the SRQ. High SRQ score was associated with few years of education, higher social problem score, less social support and greater disability. High social problem score was the strongest correlate. Conclusions: This population reports more depressive symptoms than other communities in Pakistan and this probably reflects the very high degree of social stress experienced in the NWFP, which has been affected by years of turmoil in neighbouring Afghanistan.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)36-41
    Number of pages5
    JournalBritish Journal of Psychiatry
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2007


    • Adolescent
    • Adult
    • ethnology: Afghanistan
    • epidemiology: Depressive Disorder
    • Female
    • Health Surveys
    • Humans
    • Male
    • epidemiology: Pakistan
    • Prevalence
    • Refugees
    • Socioeconomic Factors
    • psychology: Stress, Psychological


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