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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1678-4464Print version ISSN 0102-311X


SILVA, Iracema Viterbo  and  AQUINO, Estela Maria. Patterns of minor psychiatric disorders among battered women treated at an emergency care unit. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2008, vol.24, n.9, pp.2103-2114. ISSN 1678-4464.

The aim of this cross-sectional study was to describe the patterns in minor psychiatric disorders among women who suffered different types of violence. Using a version of the Abuse Assessment Screen, face-to-face interviews were conducted in a cluster sample of women ages 15 to 49 years using an emergency care hospital. Women's mental status was assessed with a version of the Self-Reporting Questionnaire (SRQ-20). From a total of 273 women, 77.3% (95%CI: 78.2-82.2) scored 7 or more on the SRQ-20, indicating the presence of psychiatric illness. The findings suggest that women who had experienced more than one type of violence (PR = 1.31; 95%CI: 1.11-1.56) and who had been battered in the previous 12 months (PR = 1.30; 95%CI: 1.08-1.58) were more likely to suffer minor mental disorders. The results show a positive association between violence and mental illness, suggesting the need for more effective measures in the care of victims, such as the creation of institutional nets to guarantee comprehensive care for women.

Keywords : Battered Women; Violence Against Women; Psychological Stress; Mental Health.

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