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J Forensic Sci. 2011 May;56(3):679-82. doi: 10.1111/j.1556-4029.2010.01691.x. Epub 2011 Feb 9.

The prevalence of mental disorders in prisoners in the city of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil.

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Bahia School of Medicine and Public Health (EBMSP), Salvador, Bahia, Brazil.


The number of individuals affected by serious psychiatric disorders in Brazilian prisons is unknown. This cross-sectional study was conducted in prison complexes within the city of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil. The sample consisted of 497 prisoners, and the outcome measure was the Brazilian Portuguese version of the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview. The prevalence rates found in the closed and semi-open prison systems, respectively, were as follows: depression 17.6% and 18.8%; bipolar mood disorder 5.2% and 10.1%; anxiety disorders 6.9% and 14.4%; borderline personality disorder 19.7% and 34.8%; antisocial personality disorder 26.9% and 24.2%; alcohol addiction 26.6% and 35.3%; drug addiction 27.9% and 32.4%; psychosis 1.4% and 12.6%; attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in childhood 10.3% and 22.2%; and ADHD in adulthood 4.1% and 5.3%. This study revealed higher rates of substance-related disorders and lower rates of psychotic and mood disorders compared to other prevalence studies carried out in prison populations.

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