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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 35  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 24-31

Comparative survey of factors associated with illness-related knowledge among patients with severe mental illness and their caregivers

Department of Psychiatry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Mamta Sood
Department of Psychiatry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi - 110 029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijsp.ijsp_112_18

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Background: Knowledge about the illness and treatment is important for treatment adherence and positive outcomes in patients with severe mental illnesses (SMIs) and their caregivers. The current study aimed at comparing the knowledge of the patients with SMI and their caregivers, and its relationship with their sociodemographic characteristics. Methodology: A cross-sectional, observational study conducted in the outpatient department of a tertiary care general hospital and comprised 50 dyads of patients with SMIs and their caregivers. Information was collected by a semi-structured questionnaire. Comparison of knowledge between groups was performed using the Chi-square test, and the relationship of knowledge with their sociodemographic variables was analyzed using logistic regression test. Results: There was a lack of knowledge among participating dyads for most of the illness- and treatment-related variables. A significant difference was observed between the two groups in regard to their knowledge about the name of the illness, how medical comorbidity and comorbid substance use affect psychiatric illness, brand name of the medicine, adverse effect, duration of treatment, role of investigation in diagnosis and treatment, and psychosocial rehabilitation (P < 0.001). The difference in knowledge was also observed regarding the formulation of medicine other than tablets and mechanism of its action (P < 0.05). Dyads with higher socioeconomic status had more knowledge about some but not all aspects of their illness. Conclusion: The patients and their caregivers lacked knowledge about many important illnesses-related variables. It is important to psychoeducate in routine clinical practice.

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