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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 97-104

Internalized stigma and psychiatric morbidity among patients with psoriasis: A study from North India

1 Department of Psychiatry, PGIMER, Chandigarh, India
2 Department of Dermatology, PGIMER, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Sandeep Grover
Department of Psychiatry, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/idoj.IDOJ_345_20

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Background: Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory dermatosis associated with psychological morbidity. Like mental illness, it is also associated with stigma. Very few studies from India have evaluated stigma experienced by patients with psoriasis. Aim of the Study: To study stigma in patients with psoriasis (in the form of internalized stigma, perceived stigma, and social-participation-restriction stigma) and its relationship with demographic and clinical variables. Methodology: 104 patients with psoriasis assessed on the internalized stigma of mental illness scale (ISMIS), explanatory model interview catalogue stigma scale, participation scale (P-scale), perceived social support, total score of Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD-7) scale, Dermatology Life Quality Index, and Psoriasis disability index. Results: On ISMIS, overall, 27.9% had experienced stigma. On domains, majority of the participants experienced discrimination (52.9%) followed by stigma resistance (51.9%), stereotype (26.0%), social withdrawal (24.1%), and alienation (23.1%). Majority of them reported mild restriction. As per the evaluation by a qualified psychiatrist, about 30% of the participants had at least one psychiatric diagnosis. On comparison, those with the presence of co-morbid psychiatric illness experienced a higher level of stigma on each domain of ISMIS except discrimination and stigma resistance. Lower social support was associated with higher stigma in all the domains. All the domains of ISMIS except discrimination and stigma resistance were associated with a higher level of anxiety and depression, poor quality of life, and higher disability. Conclusion: The patients with psoriasis experience a significant amount of stigma and stigma is associated with the presence of psychiatric morbidity, lower social support, higher restriction, and more disability.

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