Depression in Children with Epilepsy in a Teaching Hospital South/South Nigeria

Onyema Chidubem Abazie

Department of Mental Health/Psychiatry, University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital (UPTH), Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria.

Nonyenim Solomon Enyidah *

Department of Medicine, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Rivers State University, Port Harcourt, Nigeria.

Princewill Stanley

Department of Mental Health/Psychiatry, University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital (UPTH), Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Background: Epilepsy affects over 50 million in the world with a life time prevalence of 7.6%. It is the commonest paediatric neurological disorder and about 80% of these children live in the developing countries. Depression is the most common psychiatric comorbid condition in children with epilepsy.

Objective: To investigate the prevalence of depression among children aged 9-18yr with epilepsy and evaluate factors associated with depression.

Methods: 380 children with epilepsy were interviewed using researcher designed questionnaire, the clinical version of DICA-IV in a 2nd stage design, after having been screened with CES-DC. The study was descriptive with psychometric evaluation. Data obtained were analysed using SPSS version 22.0. p-values<0.05 were statistically significant.

Results: Using the CES-DC with a cut- off point of 15 and above, 117 (30.8%) of the respondents had significant scores for depression. All the 117 who were interviewed with DICA-IV met the DSM-IV criteria for major depression with 40 (10.5%) of them currently very depressed requiring urgent attention. Sociodemographic factors of; sex revealed that males were more depressed than females p=0.000, OR: 0.86, Age showed 9-11yr with a strong association p=0.001, OR:1.91. Marital status- Divorced or separated parents showed a higher association p=0.01 OR:2.233. Children with longer duration of illness had a strong association p=0,025, OR:1.203 and the more frequent the seizures, the stronger the association p=0.001, OR:1,411.

Conclusion: There is relativelhjy high prevalence of depression in children with epilepsy in Port Harcourt. More health education is needed to provide a comprehensive care.

Keywords: Epilepsy, paediatrics, CES-DC, DICA-IV, sociodemographic factors

How to Cite

Abazie , Onyema Chidubem, Nonyenim Solomon Enyidah, and Princewill Stanley. 2023. “Depression in Children With Epilepsy in a Teaching Hospital South/South Nigeria”. International Neuropsychiatric Disease Journal 20 (3):1-8.


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