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Major depressive disorder is common in the elderly population of Yoruba-speaking regions of Nigeria

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Professor Oye Gureje

Correspondence to: Professor Oye Gureje, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria;



How common is major depressive disorder in the elderly population in Yoruba-speaking areas of Nigeria?


2152 adults (aged ⩾65 years) selected by multi-stage probability sampling of households. 1897 were analysed after exclusion of those with dementia.


Eight Yoruba-speaking states in the south-west and south-central regions of Nigeria; interviews conducted November 2003 to August 2004.


Face-to-face interviews were conducted using the World Mental Health Survey section of the composite international diagnostic interview. Diagnoses of major depressive disorder (MDD) were made using DSM-IV criteria and verified by review of the survey by a clinical psychiatrist. Persons diagnosed as having dementia by a cognitive screen were excluded. The Quick Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology Self-Report (QIDS-SR) was used to rate the worst month of depressive symptoms over the past year in those with MDD, and to classify severity. Functional limitations of daily living (for example, dressing, toileting, eating) and activities …

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  • Source of funding: Wellcome Trust.


  • Competing interests: None.