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World J Gastroenterol. 2012 May 28;18(20):2561-8. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v18.i20.2561.

Prevalence of depressive and anxiety disorders in Chinese gastroenterological outpatients.

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  • 1Mental Health Center of West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, Sichuan Province, China.



To investigate the prevalence and physicians' detection rate of depressive and anxiety disorders in gastrointestinal (GI) outpatients across China.


A hospital-based cross-sectional survey was conducted in the GI outpatient departments of 13 general hospitals. A total of 1995 GI outpatients were recruited and screened with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). The physicians of the GI departments performed routine clinical diagnosis and management without knowing the HADS score results. Subjects with HADS scores ≥ 8 were subsequently interviewed by psychiatrists using the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI) to make further diagnoses.


There were 1059 patients with HADS score ≥ 8 and 674 (63.64%) of them undertook the MINI interview by psychiatrists. Based on the criteria of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th edition), the adjusted current prevalence for depressive disorders, anxiety disorders, and comorbidity of both disorders in the GI outpatients was 14.39%, 9.42% and 4.66%, respectively. Prevalence of depressive disorders with suicidal problems [suicide attempt or suicide-related ideation prior or current; module C (suicide) of MINI score ≥ 1] was 5.84% in women and 1.64% in men. The GI physicians' detection rate of depressive and anxiety disorders accounted for 4.14%.


While the prevalence of depressive and anxiety disorders is high in Chinese GI outpatients, the detection rate of depressive and anxiety disorders by physicians is low.


Anxiety; Depression; Gastrointestinal outpatients; Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview; Prevalence

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