Anxiety and depressive disorders are associated with delusional-like experiences: a replication study based on a National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing
- 1Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research, The Park Centre for Mental Health, Queensland, Australia
- 2Metro North Mental Health, Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital, Queensland, Australia
- 3The University of Queensland Centre for Clinical Research, Queensland, Australia
- 4Discipline of Psychiatry, University of Queensland, Queensland, Australia
- 5Princess Alexandra Hospital, Queensland, Australia
- 6Queensland Brain Institute, University of Queensland, Queensland, Australia
- Correspondence to Dr Sukanta Saha;
- Received 8 February 2012
- Accepted 26 April 2012
- Published 30 May 2012
Objectives There is growing evidence that delusional-like experiences (DLE) are associated with common mental disorders. In particular, a National Mental Health Survey conducted in Australia during 2007 reported an association between DLE and both anxiety disorder and major depressive disorder (MDD). However, the previous study did not examine this association with respect to subtypes of anxiety disorder nor with severity of MDD. The aim of this study was to examine the associations between DLE and both anxiety disorder and MDD in more detail based on an independent population sample.
Design Cross-sectional study.
Setting Subjects were drawn from the Australian Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing 1997 using a stratified multistage area sampling of persons living in private dwellings in all States and Territories of Australia.
Participants Approximately 13 600 private dwellings were initially selected with one person aged 18 years or older from each dwelling invited to participate. In total, 10 641 individuals participated in the survey.
Primary and secondary outcome measures The Composite International Diagnostic Interview was used to identify individuals with DLE and Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder, Fourth Edition (DSM IV) lifetime diagnoses of anxiety disorders and MDD. The influence of various anxiety disorders and MDD on DLE was assessed with logistic regression.
Results Having a lifetime diagnosis of either any anxiety disorder or MDD was significantly associated with the endorsement of DLE. The association was found for each of the main anxiety disorders when examined separately. There was a dose–response relationship between increasing severity of MDD and higher odds of DLE endorsement.
Conclusions DLE are associated with a wide range of anxiety disorders and are more prevalent in those with MDD. Understanding the relationship between DLE, anxiety disorders and depression may provide insights into shared pathways that underpin both psychotic disorders and common mental disorders.
To cite: Saha S, Scott J, Varghese D, et al. Anxiety and depressive disorders are associated with delusional-like experiences: a replication study based on a National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing. BMJ Open 2012;2:e001001. doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2012-001001
Contributors JM, SS and JS have directly participated in the planning and execution of the study. SS analysed the data. All authors have critically read and approved the final version submitted.
Funding This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None.
Patient consent Obtained.
Ethics approval We obtained data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), which is a government organisation. So, we are not aware about the exact approval authority. However, it is understood that the ABS has followed all the ethical standards to conduct this national survey.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
Data sharing statement The data are available from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
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