Skin Conditions Greatly Affect Women Psychologically
A study that was published in the European Journal of Dermatology, revealed that women are more severely impacted psychologically by skin conditions than men. The researchers determined that if they administer questionnaires to assess a patient’s possible anxiety and depression levels, they could pinpoint who might benefit for psychological counseling. In the study, researchers used a 12-question, self-administered General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12) which was designed to assess psychological distress or non-psychotic disorders and the Skindex-17, a measure of health-related quality-of-life issues related to dermatologic conditions.
“The aim of the present study was to define predictors that can be used by dermatologists to refer patients for psychological consultation and psychotherapy to improve patients’ clinical outcomes,” the researchers of the study wrote.
Results of the study showed that dermatological patients who were hospitalized had higher rates of probable depression and anxiety compared to outpatients. Specifically, it showed that the psychological impact was greatest in patients with leg ulcers, hidradenitis suppurativa, psoriasis, dermatitis, and pemphigoid. Among the patients who were involved in the study, women were more likely to receive psychological counseling than men, as were younger patients.
The researchers believe that administering psychological test questionnaires can be an effective way to identify underlying psychological conditions that could affect a patient’s dermatological treatment. In fact, existing research on patients with psoriasis has shown that initiating mindfulness-based cognitive therapy can significantly improve the severity of the disease and the patient’s quality of life.