Revista de Saúde Pública
Print version ISSN 0034-8910
MAIA, Luciana Colares; DURANTE, Ariane M G and RAMOS, Luiz Roberto. Prevalence of mental disorders in an urban area in Brazil. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 2004, vol.38, n.5, pp. 650-656. ISSN 0034-8910. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034-89102004000500006.
OBJECTIVE: To detect the prevalence of mental disorders among the elderly residents of an urban area. METHODS: A sample of 327 elderly residents (60 years and older) of the city of Montes Claros, in northern Minas Gerais, was selected by means of probabilistic sampling, in multiple strata, within a homogeneous stratum. The sample unit was the home. Mental disorders were determined by means of the Short Psychiatric Evaluation Schedule (SPES). Univariate analysis was done via the chi-squared test and multivariate analysis via logistical regression. RESULTS: The estimated prevalence of mental disorders was 29.3%. Their presence was associated with female sex, number of illnesses, functional capacity and place of residence (shantytown/non-shantytown). CONCLUSIONS: Comparing the results with other community studies, the prevalence of mental disorders among the elderly in the urban area of Montes Claros was high and was associated with multiple illnesses, incapacity and poverty. This reality is a matter for concern because of its impact on quality of life relating to this population's health, and on healthcare services over the next few decades.
Keywords : Mental disorders [epidemiology]; Aging health; Mental health; Aging; Prevalence; Cross-sectional studies; Questionnaires; Quality of life; Health services for the aged.