What is it about?

We interviewed 343 patients with different heart diseases who attended the cardiac outpatient clinic at King Abdullah Medical City, Makkah, Saudi Arabia. We used a commonly used diagnostic instrument, the Mini-Neuropsychiatric Interview (known as MINI), to confirm the psychiatric diagnoses. Among these patients, (27.1% were found to have a psychiatric disorder. The most common mental illnesses were major depressive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.

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Why is it important?

Knowing how common are psychiatric disorders in patients with heart diseases is crucial. To ensure managing cardiac patients in a holistic approach and cover other aspects of their quality of life, mental health assessment has to be included. While there are studies that estimated the prevalence of psychiatric disorders in cardiac patients, these were targeted to specific mental illness or to specific heart disease. There is scarce of literature that estimated mental illnesses in a general setting like outpatient department.


I hope this article shows how important to screen for mental illnesses in cardiac patients. While Cardiac diseases are very common in the general population, psychiatric disorders are not less common. Given how common are psychiatric disorders in cardiac patients, which are two to three times more common than in the general population, this calls for the importance of implementing proactive measures for screening mental illnesses in cardiac patients.

Dr Ahmad Saad Alzahrani
King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Prevalence of Psychiatric Disorders in Cardiac Outpatients, Psychiatric Annals, September 2020, SLACK, Inc., DOI: 10.3928/00485713-20200807-01.
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