Objective: This study was undertaken to determine the prevalence of mental disorders among obstetric-gynecologic patients and to assess the validity and utility of the PRIME-MD Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ) in this population.
Study design: A total of 3000 patients were assessed by 63 clinicians at seven obstetrics-gynecology outpatient care sites. The main outcome measures were PRIME-MD PHQ diagnoses, psychosocial stressors, independent diagnoses made by mental health professionals, functional status measures, disability days, health care use, and treatment or referral decisions.
Results: Current mental disorders were fairly prevalent, present in 1 in 5 obstetric-gynecologic patients. Patients with PRIME-MD PHQ diagnoses had more functional impairment, disability days, health care use, and psychosocial stressors than did patients without PRIME-MD PHQ diagnoses (P <.005 for all measures). Although most clinicians judged the PRIME-MD PHQ to be useful in management decisions, the questionnaire diagnosis of mental disorder rarely led to therapeutic intervention.
Conclusion: The PRIME-MD PHQ is a useful instrument for the assessment of mental disorders, functional impairment, and recent psychosocial stressors in the busy obstetrics-gynecology setting.