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Psychiatric morbidity in wives of male patients with alcohol dependence syndrome

Author: 
Rajashekar, Y.R.
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Background: Alcoholism causes harm to the well-being and health of the person and also he family. Spouses are mostly affected because of the intimate nature of the relationship. Studies on the impact on spouses have been very less in psychiatric literature. Objective: 1. To evaluate the frequency and nature of psychiatric morbidity in wives of patients with alcohol dependence syndrome. 2. To study the relationship between psychiatric disorders of wives with the severity of alcohol dependence. Methods: Cross sectional observational study was done by enrolling a total of 100 patients diagnosed with alcohol dependence and their wives screening (112 patients, 12 refused consent, 100 were enrolled). Patients were recruited by consecutive sampling method. Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (M.I.N.I) – To assess psychiatric morbidity among wives and Severity of Alcohol Dependence Questionnaire (SADQ) – To assess the severity of Alcohol addiction among husbands. Results: Psychiatric co-morbidities were seen in 56% cases. Most common associated psychiatric morbidity was depression (37%) followed by anxiety (15%), phobia (3%) and psychotic disorder (1%). A significant association was seen between presence of psychiatric co-morbidity and severity of alcoholism (p<0.05) with prevalence of psychiatric morbidity among low, medium and severe alcoholism cases was 27.3%, 60.4% and 83.8% respectively. Conclusions: The high rates of social and psychological distress among women whose partners have alcohol problems, need to be addressed either as part of alcohol treatment programs or independently. These issues need to be addressed not only to improve outcomes for the dependent individuals, but also as potentially reversible risk factors that could significantly impact women's own health outcomes.

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