African Journal of Psychiatry

Description

  • Impact factor
    0.87
  • 5-year impact
    0.00
  • Cited half-life
    2.80
  • Immediacy index
    0.42
  • Eigenfactor
    0.00
  • Article influence
    0.00
  • ISSN
    1994-8220

Publications in this journal

  • African Journal of Psychiatry 06/2014; 17(129):1994-8220.
  • African Journal of Psychiatry 11/2013; 16(6).
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Addictions encompass many areas and many things, indeed any substance or habit that brings about euphoric sensations can become addictive, be it the pathological gamblers thrill of a horse nearly winning a race, or the self-destructive sensation of it loosing, or the drug users euphoria of heroin, and the need for more of it as the inevitable withdrawal symptoms begin. AB, a 19 year old sex worker, with a heroin addiction, presented with low mood and reduced vocal speed. She had suffered recent hallucinations. Within the past two weeks AB had withdrawn from family contact. She admitted transient thoughts of suicide, although had never acted on these. She had 3 large scabbed lesions on her face and raised lesions on her arm containing pus and signs of phlebitis. Her drug source/dealer has remained the same, but he now offers two qualities of heroin. Hallucinations have occurred within the last two weeks, with thoughts of seeing cats jumping from the walls.
    African Journal of Psychiatry 11/2013; 16(6).
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    ABSTRACT: The aims of this study were to determine the prevalence of metabolic disorders in long-term psychiatric patients, and the relationship between known risk factors and these metabolic disorders. All psychiatric in-patients ≥18 years, who had been admitted ≥six months were invited to participate. Eighty-four patients participated. They were interviewed, examined, measured and blood tests conducted to determine several demographic and clinical variables including age, gender, weight, blood pressure and fasting blood glucose. The prevalence of the metabolic disorders were: metabolic syndrome 32%, hypertension 32%, diabetes mellitus 8%, cholesterol dyslipidaemia 32%, triglyceride dyslipidaemia 29%, low density lipoprotein (LDL) dyslipidaemia 50%, overweight 37%, and obesity 24%. Black African and female patients were more likely to have metabolic syndrome. Female patients were more likely to have cholesterol dyslipidaemia and obesity. Hypertension was associated with age. Ninety-six percent of patients with dyslipidaemia were newly diagnosed during the study. Three out of the seven previously diagnosed diabetic patients had raised fasting blood glucose levels. The prevalence of metabolic syndrome falls towards the lower limits of the expected prevalence rate. Race and gender showed a moderate statistical association with metabolic syndrome. There is a lack of screening for dyslipidaemia in this setting. Diabetic patients should be referred to specialist diabetic clinics for better monitoring and control.
    African Journal of Psychiatry 11/2013; 16(6).
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    ABSTRACT: The psychological impact of the South African border war on veterans has received little or no attention. This study determined the prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and extent of resilience among a cohort of veterans. Of 1527 former students who matriculated from a Johannesburg high school from 1975 to 1988, only 109 were reachable for convenience and snowballing recruitment into this study. An anonymous, internet-based questionnaire was used to obtain information on demography, combat exposure, drug and alcohol use, traumatic events in later life, and recourse to medication and counselling. The Impact of Event Scale - Revised (IES-R) assessed for PTSD and the Connor Davidson Resilience Scale (CDRISC) measured resilience. Data were processed with STATA; version 11 statistical software package. Analysis included Chi square test and regression analysis. The response rate was 49.5% (n=54). The prevalence of PTSD was 33% and significantly associated with combat exposure (p=.012). Despite high prevalence of PTSD in those exposed to combat, 94% showed normal to above-normal level of resilience. CD-RISC scores showed no association with the IES-R. Only current cannabis use was significantly linked with PTSD (p=.044). Although the prevalence of PTSD found in this sample was higher than in comparable international studies, this cohort of former SA national servicemen, showed high levels of resilience. The current use of cannabis within the context of prior exposure to military national service or combat should prompt clinicians to screen for the presence of PTSD-associated symptoms.
    African Journal of Psychiatry 11/2013; 16(6).
  • African Journal of Psychiatry 11/2013; 16(6).
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    ABSTRACT: This study examined the competence and accuracy of ad hoc interpreters in interpreting key psychiatric terms at a South African psychiatric hospital METHODS: Nine individuals were asked to translate key psychiatric terms from English to Xhosa. These translations were then back-translated by independent translators, who do not have knowledge of psychiatric terminology. These back-translations were then compared with the original English. It was clear that not all the participants were fully competent in English. None had formal training in interpreting or psychiatric terminology. Not all of the participants were familiar with the psychiatric concepts that clinicians use and they often made mistakes while interpreting. The competency levels of interpreters are unsatisfactory to ensure the optimal delivery of mental health care. It is clear that there is a need for trained interpreters in South Africa, as the continuous use of untrained interpreters compromises the effectiveness of mental health care and could lead to adverse health outcomes.
    African Journal of Psychiatry 11/2013; 16(6).
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    ABSTRACT: This study analyzes the relationship between informants' age and their assessment of mental health needs in postconflict society and examines if mental health needs assessment priorities differ depending upon whether or not the informant was exposed to the Liberian civil war. cross-sectional survey was conducted in March 2009 to obtain data on mental health needs of Liberian children, adolescents and young adults. A total of 171 individuals were interviewed. The data were analyzed using a two- way ANOVA. Elder respondents expressed a preference for young adults to receive services in a church/mosque (F = 4.020, p < .05); for adolescents in volunteer programs (F = 3.987, p < .05) and for children in sports programs (F = 4.396, p < .05). Experiencing conflict did exert some influence on treatment setting preferences. Those who resided outside Liberia during the conflict cited a preference for traditional healers and medical clinics. However, this preference was for the children and young adult age categories. Those who experienced the civil war reported significantly higher preferences for adolescent services to be located in medical clinics, with traditional healers, and in churches/mosques. This study provides additional support for the premise that the utilization of psychiatric services needs to be viewed from the perspective of Liberians and that there are differences in preferences across groups. Our results suggest that service providers and policy makers take into account the age of the patient when deciding where to locate treatment settings for the population.
    African Journal of Psychiatry 11/2013; 16(6).
  • African Journal of Psychiatry 09/2013; 16(5):325.
  • African Journal of Psychiatry 09/2013; 16(5):311-3.
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    ABSTRACT: This study qualitatively explored local meanings of thinness and dysfunctional eating in black adolescent females in the rapidly westernizing socio-cultural context of post-apartheid South Africa. Four (n=4) urban state highschools in KwaZulu-Natal were selected from which 40 subjects were sampled from Grades 9-12. Focus groups were conducted following a semi-structured interview and analysed using Constant Comparative Analysis. Subjects reported a wide range of different meanings for thinness, which included traditional idioms of distress and typically western pressures towards thinness, which was particularly evident in the multicultural schools. Subjects also reported a wide range of dysfunctional eating practices (such as purging) which were underscored by a wide range of motivations, including traditional practices and western body image concern; and which did not tend to follow patterns of 'dieting' that are typical in affluent, western societies. Western pressures towards thinness may be blending with traditional idioms of distress and culturally sanctioned rituals of remedial purging and social over-eating, thereby placing this group at particular risk for a range of dysfunctional eating patterns that may not follow typically western paradigms or diagnostic systems.
    African Journal of Psychiatry 09/2013; 16(5):338-42.
  • African Journal of Psychiatry 09/2013; 16(5):329-31.
  • African Journal of Psychiatry 09/2013; 16(5):327.
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    ABSTRACT: A rape victim may encounter professionals in both the health and the legal systems. Unanswered questions remain about clinical factors associated with a rape victim's ability to testify in court, and the quality of care offered to rape victims. The objectives of this study were thus to determine the clinical factors that are associated with a rape victim's ability to testify in court, as well as to undertake a preliminary exploration of the referral system between the court and the mental health services. A retrospective study was conducted of rape victims referred by the court (n=70) to be assessed psycho-legally by psychiatrists. Rape victims who were recommended as able and those recommended as unable to testify in court were compared with regard to their clinical characteristics. Thirty-seven (53.6%) victims were recommended as able to testify and 32 (46.4%) victims as unable to testify in court. Victims from rural areas and victims with severe mental retardation were statistically significantly more often found to be unable to testify in court. Almost half (49.2%) of the victims were referred by court for first assessment within six months of being raped. Most (63.5%) victims were assessed for the first time within one month of being referred. The decision about a victim's ability to testify should not be based solely on the two statistically significant variables but, rather, individualised. Optimal mental health and legal services should be offered to rape victims. Further studies are required in assessing the collaboration between the health and legal systems.
    African Journal of Psychiatry 09/2013; 16(5):343-8.