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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 28  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 198-203

Prevalence and factors associated with depression among medical students in Nigeria

1 Department of Family Medicine, Muhammad Abdullahi Wase Teaching Hospital, Kano, Nigeria
2 Department of Public Health, Ministry of Health, Katsina, Nigeria
3 Department of Community Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria
4 Department of Psychiatry, College of Health Sciences, Kano, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Musa Usman Umar
Department of Psychiatry, College of Health Sciences, Bayero University, Kano
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/npmj.npmj_414_21

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Background: Depression among medical students has been partly attributed to the nature of medical education, and may lead to poor academic and professional adjustment. The objectives of the study were to assess the prevalence of depression and its relationship to socio-demographic and clinical risk factors among medical students of Bayero University in Kano, Nigeria. Methodology: A descriptive cross-sectional study was performed. Two hundred and seventy-nine medical students were selected using a multi-stage sampling technique. The respondents were given a self-reporting questionnaire, which included sociodemographic details and 3-item Oslo Social Support Rating Scale. Depression was assessed using the Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview (7.0). Results: The prevalence of depression among medical students was 15.1%. Depression was more in females, <22 years, those at the lower level of study, poor social support, family history of depression and history of depression. After logistic regression, only being female (P = 0.008) and history of depression (P = 0.007) differentiated medical students with depression from those with no depression with odds ratio (OR) of 2.88 (95% confidence interval [CI] = [1.31, 6.33]) and OR of 2.79 (95% CI = [1.33, 5.84]), respectively. There was no association between depression and poor financial state (P = 0.175), self-reported academic performance (P = 0.719) and use of psychoactive substances (P = 0.311). Conclusion: Depression is an important condition among medical students in Nigeria. There is a need to help students with mental health challenges by providing preventive measures, early identification and treatment mechanisms in medical schools in the country.

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