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Int J Soc Psychiatry. 2011 Jul;57(4):418-27. doi: 10.1177/0020764010363522. Epub 2010 Mar 30.

Correlates of self-stigma among outpatients with mental illness in Lagos, Nigeria.

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  • 1Department of Behavioural Medicine, Lagos State University College of Medicine, Ikeja, Nigeria. biodunwuya@yahoo.com



Studies in this region have all been limited to public stigma whereas little is known about the extent of self-stigma.


To assess the extent, domains and correlates of self-stigma among psychiatric outpatients in Lagos, Nigeria.


Psychiatric outpatients (n = 342) from three centres completed a modified version of the Internalized Stigma of Mental Illness scale (ISMI) as a measure of their self-stigma. They were also evaluated for various sociodemographic and clinical related variables.


A total of 74 (n = 21.6%) patients were classified as having 'high self-stigma'. The correlates of high self-stigma included unemployment (OR 3.85, 95% CI 2.55-7.00), poor social support (OR 10.82, 95% CI 4.85-24.84), longer duration of illness (OR 10.35, 95% CI 4.36-25.78) and having full insight into the illness (OR 4.23, 95% CI 2.16-8.76).


Self-stigma is a common phenomenon in psychiatric outpatients in this environment. The present anti-stigma programmes must extend to regions of sub-Saharan Africa and incorporate self-stigma as a matter of priority.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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