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Int J Epidemiol. 2010 Dec;39(6):1510-21. doi: 10.1093/ije/dyq179. Epub 2010 Oct 29.

Association of socio-economic, gender and health factors with common mental disorders in women: a population-based study of 5703 married rural women in India.

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Public Health Foundation of India, India.



There are few population-based studies from low- and middle-income countries that have described the association of socio-economic, gender and health factors with common mental disorders (CMDs) in rural women.


Population-based study of currently married rural women in the age group of 15-39 years. The baseline data are from the National Family Health Survey-II conducted in 1998. A follow-up study was conducted 4 years later in 2002-03. The outcome of CMD was assessed using the 12-item General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12). Due to the hierarchical nature and complex survey design, data were analysed using mixed-effect logistic regression with random intercept model.


A total of 5703 women (representing 83.5% of eligible women) completed follow-up. The outcome of CMD was observed in 609 women (10.7%, 95% confidence interval 9.8-11.6). The following factors were independently associated with the outcome of CMD in the final multivariable model: higher age, low education, low standard of living, recent intimate partner violence (IPV), husband's unsatisfactory reaction to dowry, husband's alcohol use and women's own tobacco use.


Socio-economic and gender disadvantage factors are independently associated with CMDs in this population of women. Strategies that address structural determinants, for example to promote women's education and reduce their exposure to IPV, may reduce the burden of CMDs in women.

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