Prevalence and presentation of depressive illness in a primary health care setting in Kenya.
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Using a two-stage screening procedure, ICD-9 diagnostic criteria, and the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression, the authors diagnosed depressive disorders in 81 (9.2%) of 881 patients in a primary care setting in Kenya. All depressed patients had somatic symptoms, and all of the 27 depressed patients assessed with the Hamilton scale scored higher than 2 on the work and activities item. These findings contradict the earlier reports that Africans do not admit to being depressed. Nearly one-third of the depressed patients were moderately or severely ill and would have benefited from psychiatric assessment and treatment.