Objective: The present study aimed to assess the prevalence and predictors of anxiety and depression in Australian chronic hepatitis C (CHC) outpatients. Method: Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale scores at referral and other patient data was analysed for 395 CHC outpatients attending the Royal Adelaide Hospital liver clinic from 2006 to 2010. Results: Results revealed probable prevalence rates of 41% for anxiety and 27% for depression. CHC patients had rates of anxiety and depression 1.2 and 2.4 times higher than community norms, respectively. Younger patients were found to experience increased anxiety, while married patients or those in a de facto relationship experienced decreased anxiety and depression. Conclusion: Regular psychiatric screening, and subsequent referral for mental health treatment, where necessary, is recommended for Australian CHC patients. Younger patients or those lacking social supports may be at increased risk. Research is needed to develop and evaluate psychological interventions.
- hepatitis C