Matthias C Angermeyer

Università degli studi di Cagliari, Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy

Are you Matthias C Angermeyer?

Claim your profile

Publications (600)1352.87 Total impact

  • Mauro G Carta, Matthias C Angermeyer
    Culture Medicine and Psychiatry 10/2014; · 1.29 Impact Factor
  • Source
    Georg Schomerus, Herbert Matschinger, Matthias C Angermeyer
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background: Alcohol dependence is among the most severely stigmatized mental disorders. We examine whether negative stereotypes and illness beliefs related to alcohol dependence have changed between 1990 and 2011. Methods: We used data from two population surveys with identical methodology that were conducted among German citizens aged ≥18 years, living in the 'old' German states. They were conducted in 1990 and 2011, respectively. In random subsamples (1990: n = 1,022, and 2011: n = 1,167), identical questions elicited agreement with statements regarding alcohol dependence, particularly with regard to the illness definition of alcohol dependence and blame. Results: Overall, agreement with negative stereotypes did not change in the course of 2 decades. About 55% of the respondents agreed that alcohol dependence is an illness like any other, >40% stated that it was a weakness of character and 30% endorsed that those affected are themselves to blame for their problems. Conclusions: It is apparent that promoting an illness concept of alcohol dependence has not been an easy solution to the problem of stigma. We discuss how the normative functions of alcohol dependence stigma might have prevented a reduction of negative stereotypes. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    European Addiction Research 10/2014; 20(6):293-299. · 2.36 Impact Factor
  • Source
    World psychiatry: official journal of the World Psychiatric Association (WPA) 10/2014; 13(3). · 8.97 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Associations between asthma and anxiety and mood disorders are well established, but little is known about their temporal sequence. We examined associations between a wide range of DSM-IV mental disorders with adult onset of asthma and whether observed associations remain after mental comorbidity adjustments.
    Journal of psychiatric research. 09/2014;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In this study, we aimed to analyze the association between new-incident-subjective memory complaints (SMC) and risk of subsequent dementia in a general population sample aged 75+ years.
    Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica 09/2014; · 4.86 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Alcohol dependence is a severely stigmatized disorder. Perceived stigma may deter help-seeking and is associated with higher co-morbidity and self-stigma in persons with alcohol dependence. We assess changes in the perception of alcohol-related stigma over 21 years in the general population.
    Drug and Alcohol Dependence 08/2014; · 3.14 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: There is not much known about the associations of beliefs about depression (depression literacy) with a history of depression and treatment experience.
    Journal of affective disorders. 08/2014; 164C:28-32.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Using population-based data, the relationship between biogenetic causal beliefs and emotional reactions to persons with schizophrenia or depression was examined. Biogenetic attributions elicited either negative emotions alone or pro-social and negative emotions at the same time. Biogenetic attributions seem not helpful for improving emotional reactions to people with mental disorders.
    Psychiatry Research 07/2014; · 2.68 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Whether mental disorders should be considered as categorical or dimensional has found increasing attention among mental health professionals. Only little is known about what the public thinks about this issue.
    International Journal of Social Psychiatry 07/2014; · 1.15 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Aims. Previous population-based studies did not support the view that biological and genetic causal models help increase social acceptance of people with mental illness. However, practically all these studies used un-labelled vignettes depicting symptoms of the disorders of interest. Thus, in these studies the public's reactions to pathological behaviour had been assessed rather than reactions to psychiatric disorders that had explicitly been labelled as such. The question arises as to whether results would have been similar if respondents had been confronted with vignettes with explicit mention of the respective diagnosis. Methods. Analyses are based on data of a telephone survey in two German metropolises conducted in 2011. Case-vignettes with typical symptoms suggestive of depression or schizophrenia were presented to the respondents. After presentation of the vignette respondents were informed about the diagnosis. Results. We found a statistically significant association of the endorsement of brain disease as a cause with greater desire for social distance from persons with schizophrenia. In major depression, this relation was absent. With both disorders, there was no statistically significant association between the endorsement of hereditary factors as a cause and social distance. Conclusions. Irrespective of whether unlabelled or labelled vignettes are employed, the ascription to biological or genetic causes seems not to be associated with a reduction of the public's desire for social distance from people with schizophrenia or depression. Our results corroborate the notion that promulgating biological and genetic causal models may not help decrease the stigma surrounding these illnesses.
    Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences 04/2014; · 2.94 Impact Factor
  • Source
  • Source
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Although only a few people exposed to a traumatic event (TE) develop posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), symptoms that do not meet full PTSD criteria are common and often clinically significant. Individuals with these symptoms sometimes have been characterized as having subthreshold PTSD, but no consensus exists on the optimal definition of this term. Data from a large cross-national epidemiologic survey are used in this study to provide a principled basis for such a definition.
    Biological psychiatry. 04/2014;
  • M C Angermeyer, H Matschinger, G Schomerus
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Aims. In recent years, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Mental Health Declaration for Europe and other initiatives laid the ground for improving the rights of persons with mental illness. This study aims to explore to what extent these achievements are reflected in changes of public attitudes towards restrictions on mentally ill people. Methods. Data from two population surveys that have been conducted in the 'new' States of Germany in 1993 and 2011 are compared with each other. Results. The proportion of respondents accepting compulsory admission of mentally ill persons to a psychiatric hospital remained unchanged in general, but the proportion opposing compulsory admission on grounds not sanctioned by law declined. In contrast, more respondents were opposed to permanently revoking the driver's license and fewer supported abortion and (voluntary) sterilisation in 2011. Concerning the right to vote and compulsory sterilisation, the proportion of those who did not give their views increased most. Conclusions. Two divergent trends in public attitudes towards restrictions on people with mental disorders emerge: While, in general, people's views on patients' rights have become more liberal, the public is also more inclined to restricting patients' freedom in case of deviant behaviour.
    Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences 04/2014; · 2.94 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Aims. There is substantial diversity in national suicide rates, which has mainly been related to socio-economic factors, as well as cultural factors. Stigma is a cultural phenomenon, determining the level of social acceptance or rejection of persons with mental illness in a society. In this study, we explore whether national suicide rates are related to the degree of mental illness stigma in that country. Methods. We combine the data on country-level social acceptance (Eurobarometer) with the data on suicide rates and socio-economic indicators (Eurostat) for 25 European countries. Results. In a linear regression model controlling for socio-economic indicators, the social acceptance of someone with a significant mental health problem in 2010 was negatively correlated with age standardised national suicide rates in the same year (β -0.46, p = 0.014). This association also held true when combining national suicide rates with death rates due to events of undetermined intent. Conclusions. Stigma towards persons with mental health problems may contribute to differences in suicide rates in a country. We hypothesise possible mechanisms explaining this link, including stigma as a stressor and social isolation as a consequence of stigma.
    Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences 02/2014; · 2.94 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Public attitudes and beliefs are relevant to both individual and structural discrimination. They are a reflection of cultural conceptions of mental illness that form a reality that people must take into account when they enact behavior and policy makers must confront when making decisions. Understanding and keeping track of these attitudes is critical to understanding individual and structural discrimination. Theories of stigma posit that both forms of discrimination are distinct phenomena. Practically nothing is known about how attitudes regarding individual and structural discrimination relate. Our study addresses this gap by examining how attitudes toward allocating financial resources to the care of people with depression (structural discrimination) have developed over the last decade in Germany, compared to the public's desire for social distance from these people (individual discrimination). Previous studies have shown the public being more ready to accept cutbacks for the care for mentally ill persons than for medically ill persons. These preferences could have changed with regard to depression, since there is a growing awareness among the German public of an "epidemic of depression". The idea of a high prevalence of depression may have led to a heightened perception of personal susceptibility for this disorder, making the public become more reluctant to accept cutbacks for the care of people with depression. On the other hand, there is reason to assume that the growing awareness of high prevalence of depression among the general public has not affected individual discrimination of persons suffering from this disorder. The two assumptions were tested comparing data from population surveys conducted in Germany in 2001 and 2011. Within ten years, the proportion of respondents who opposed cutting money from depression treatment tripled from 6% to 21%. In contrast, the public's desire for social distance from persons with depression remained unchanged. Moreover, both trends proved to be independent from each other. Our findings suggest that attitudes relevant to structural and individual discrimination are not necessarily linked together and may lead to divergent results. This means that a comprehensive understanding of stigma must consider both forms of discriminating attitudes together. Studying both simultaneously may deepen our understanding of each and point to novel ways to produce change.
    Social Science [?] Medicine 02/2014; 103:60-6. · 2.73 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objectives of the study and background. Schizophrenia is a complex disease that affects 1% of the population. This disease has a considerable impact not only on patients’ health and well-being but also on their surrounding environment. The costs of the disease’s management remain large for individuals and society. While literature on the economic impact of schizophrenia is abundant, few studies have focused on its humanistic burden. This does not only concern patients, but also caregivers, relatives, neighbors and others in a patient’s daily life. This burden appears through several dimensions, including treatment side effects and the impact on caregivers and features of the patient’s environment. The aim of this review is to consider, compile and describe the humanistic burden of schizophrenia as documented in the literature. Materials and methods We conducted a literature review assessing the worldwide disease burden of schizophrenia, taking into account all humanistic burden topics. The search considered several databases, including Embase, Medline, Cochrane Library, The German Institute of Medical Documentation and Information (DIMDI) and the ISPOR conference websites. Results The search identified 200 literature reviews, covering several dimensions of humanistic burden and documenting many issues. Main findings included the high death rates that may be explained by long-lasting negative health habits, disease- and treatment-related metabolic disorders, and consequent increased frequencies of cardiovascular diseases. Co-existing depression was found to have adverse consequence on the course of schizophrenia progression, morbidity and mortality. Cognitive impairment also adds to the burden of schizophrenia. Social impairment is worsened by underestimated stigmatisation and lack of corresponding awareness within the professional and social spheres. Finally, caregiver burden was found to be considerable. Discussion. Humanistic burden among patients with schizophrenia is substantial potentially impacted by co-morbid depressive symptoms, caregiver burden and cognitive impairment. Effects of treatment on humanistic burden in addition to economic burden need to be explored in future trials.
    Journal of Psychiatric Research 01/2014; · 4.09 Impact Factor
  • Sven Speerforck, Georg Schomerus, Susanne Pruess, Matthias C. Angermeyer
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objective It is unclear whether different biogenetic causal beliefs affect stigmatization of mentally-ill patients differently. It has been argued that in particular believing in a ‘chemical imbalance’ as a cause of mental disorder might be associated with more tolerant attitudes. Method In a representative population survey in Germany (n=3642), using unlabelled case vignettes of persons with depression, schizophrenia, or alcohol dependence, we elicited agreement with three different biogenetic explanations of the illness: ‘Chemical imbalance of the brain’, ‘brain disease’ and ‘heredity’. We further investigated emotional reactions as well as the desire for social distance. For each vignette condition we calculated linear regressions with each biogenetic explanation as independent and emotional reactions as well as social distance as dependent variable controlling for socio-demographic variables. Limitations Our cross-sectional study does not allow statements regarding causality and the explanatory power of our statistical models was low. Results ‘Chemical imbalance of the brain’ and ‘brain disease’ were both associated with a stronger desire for social distance in schizophrenia and depression, and with more social acceptance in alcohol dependence, whereas ‘heredity’ was not significantly associated with social distance in any of the investigated illnesses. All three biogenetic causal beliefs were associated with more fear in all three illnesses. Conclusion Our study corroborates findings that biogenetic explanations have different effects in different disorders, and seem to be harmful in depression and schizophrenia. A particular de-stigmatizing potential of the causal belief ‘chemical imbalance’ could not be found. Implications for useful anti-stigma messages are discussed.
    Journal of Affective Disorders 01/2014; 168:224–228. · 3.30 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To examine rehabilitation preferences, participation and determinants for the choice of a certain rehabilitation setting (inpatient vs. outpatient) and setting-specific rehabilitation outcomes. The longitudinal observational study referred to 534 consecutive disc surgery patients (18-55 years). Face-to-face baseline interviews took place about 3.6 days after disc surgery during acute hospital stay. 486 patients also participated in a follow-up interview via telephone three months later (dropout-rate: 9%). The following instruments were used: depression and anxiety (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale), pain intensity (numeric analog scale), health-related quality of life (Short Form 36 Health Survey), subjective prognosis of gainful employment (SPE-scale) as well as questions on rehabilitation attendance, return to work, and amount of sick leave days. The vast majority of patients undergoing surgery for a herniated disc attended a post-hospital rehabilitation treatment program (93%). Thereby two-thirds of these patients took part in an inpatient rehabilitation program (67.9%). Physical, psychological, vocational and health-related quality of life characteristics differed widely before as well as after rehabilitation depending on the setting. Inpatient rehabilitees were significantly older, reported more pain, worse physical quality of life, more anxiety and depression and a worse subjective prognosis of gainful employment before rehabilitation. Pre-rehabilitation differences remained significant after rehabilitation. More than half of the outpatient rehabilitees (56%) compared to only one third of the inpatient rehabilitees (33%) returned to work three months after disc surgery (p<.001). The results suggest a "pre-selection" of patients with better health status in outpatient rehabilitation. Gaining better knowledge about setting-specific selection processes may help optimizing rehabilitation allocation procedures and improve rehabilitation effects such as return to work.
    PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(3):e89200. · 3.53 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background There is not much known about the associations of beliefs about depression (depression literacy) with a history of depression and treatment experience. Methods Analyses were based on a telephone survey in two large German cities (Hamburg and Munich). Written vignettes with typical signs and symptoms suggestive of a depression were presented to 1293 respondents. Respondents were then asked about beliefs about causes, symptoms, prevalence, and treatment using a standardized questionnaire. For the analysis respondents were divided into three groups: (1) people who never had a depression, (2) people who had a depression but were not treated and (3) people with treatment experience. Results Respondents with experience in treatment for depression were more likely to correctly recognize the disorder, to positively evaluate treatability and to favor external factors (adverse conditions in childhood and psychosocial stress) as potential causes of depression compared to those who never were afflicted. There were no significant differences between these two groups regarding beliefs about the effectiveness of treatment options. There were only few significant differences in depression literacy between respondents who have a history of depression but have not sought help and those who never were afflicted. Limitations The three groups were constituted on the basis of respondents׳ self-reports, not medical diagnoses. Conclusions Our findings only partly support the general assumption that being afflicted and having sought help is associated with beliefs closer to those of professionals.
    Journal of Affective Disorders. 01/2014; 164:28–32.

Publication Stats

11k Citations
1,352.87 Total Impact Points


  • 2011–2014
    • Università degli studi di Cagliari
      • Department of Public Health, Clinical and Molecular Medicine
      Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy
    • Mutuelle Génerale de l'Education Nationale
      Île-de-France, France
  • 2013
    • Université René Descartes - Paris 5
      Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France
    • The London School of Economics and Political Science
      • Personal Social Services Research Unit
      London, ENG, United Kingdom
  • 2011–2013
    • University Medical Center Hamburg - Eppendorf
      Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
  • 2009–2013
    • University of Greifswald
      • Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy
      Greifswald, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany
    • Peking University
      • Institute of Mental Health
      Beijing, Beijing Shi, China
    • The Chinese University of Hong Kong
      • Department of Psychiatry
      Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • 2007–2013
    • University of Otago
      • Department of Psychological Medicine (Dunedin)
      Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand
  • 1996–2013
    • University of Leipzig
      • • Institut für Sozialmedizin, Arbeitsmedizin und Public Health
      • • Klinik und Poliklinik für Psychiatrie und Psychotherapie
      Leipzig, Saxony, Germany
  • 2012
    • Illinois Institute of Technology
      Chicago, Illinois, United States
    • Parc Sanitari Sant Joan de Déu
      Sant Boi de Llobregat, Catalonia, Spain
    • University of Toronto
      Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    • Boston Children's Hospital
      • Division of General Pediatrics
      Boston, MA, United States
    • Harvard Medical School
      • Department of Health Care Policy
      Boston, MA, United States
    • Creativ-Ceutical
      Letzeburg, Luxembourg, Luxembourg
  • 2008–2012
    • Medical University of Vienna
      • Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy
      Wien, Vienna, Austria
    • University College London
      • Mental Health Sciences Unit
      London, ENG, United Kingdom
    • University of Ibadan
      • Department of Psychiatry
      Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria
    • Fachhochschule Münster
      Muenster, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
    • University of Groningen
      • Department of Psychiatry
      Groningen, Province of Groningen, Netherlands
    • Universitair Ziekenhuis Leuven
      • Department of Psychiatry
      Louvain, Flanders, Belgium
    • Boston College, USA
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2010–2011
    • University of Hamburg
      • Department of Medical Sociology and Health Economics
      Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
    • Instituto Nacional de Psiquiatría
      Ciudad de México, The Federal District, Mexico
    • Ministry of Health (Israel)
      Yerushalayim, Jerusalem District, Israel
    • Saint George Hospital University Medical Center
      Beyrouth, Beyrouth, Lebanon
  • 2008–2010
    • University of New South Wales
      Kensington, New South Wales, Australia
    • IMIM Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute
      Barcino, Catalonia, Spain
  • 1993–2009
    • Central Institute of Mental Health
      Mannheim, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
  • 2005–2006
    • University of Freiburg
      • Institute of Psychology
      Freiburg, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
  • 2004–2005
    • Universität Ulm
      • Clinic of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy III (Ulm)
      Ulm, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
    • University of Vienna
      Wien, Vienna, Austria
    • Fachhochschule der Wirtschaft
      Paderborn, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
  • 1999
    • University of Kuopio
      • Department of Forensic Psychiatry
      Kuopio, Eastern Finland Province, Finland