Prevalence of mental and behavioural disorders in India : a meta-analysis

Indian J Psychiatry. 1998 Apr;40(2):149-57.


A meta-analysis of 13 psychiatric epidemiological studies consisting of 33572 persons in 6550 families yielded an estimate prevalence rate of 58.2 per thousand population. Organic psychosis (prevalence rate 0.4), schizophrenia (2.7), affective disorders (12.3) contributed a rate of 15.4 for psychoses. The prevalence rate for mental retardation (6.9), epilepsy (4.4), neurotic disorders (20.7), alcohol/drug addiction (6.9; and miscellaneous group (3.9) were estimated. Higher prevalence for urban sector, females, age group of 35-44, married/widowers/divorced, lower socioeconomic status, and nuclear family members were confirmed. Epilepsy and hysteria were found significantly high in rural communities. Manic affective psychosis, mental retardation, alcohol/ drug addiction and personality disorders were significantly high in males. The findings indicated that there are 1.5 crore people suffering from severe mental disorders (psychoses) in India, and that severe diseases have higher representation at specialized as well as general hospital clinics. Among other things, the results aid in conducting morbidity surveys by more methodological approach.

Keywords: Meta-analysis; biosocial correlates; estimate prevalence rate; mental and behavioural disorders.