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A Journal on Psychiatry, Psychology and Psychopharmacology
Official Journal of the Italian Society of Social Psychiatry
Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, e-psyche, PsycINFO, Scopus, Emerging Sources Citation Index
Minerva Psichiatrica 2014 June;55(2):91-103
Psychiatric consequences of disasters in Italy: a systematic review
Chierzi F., Toniolo I., Allegri F., Storbini V., Belvederi Murri M., Triolo F., Kokona A., Marcacci T., Braca M., Menchetti M., Berardi D., Tarricone I.
Section of Psychiatry, Department of Medical and Surgical Science, Bologna University, Bologna, Italy
Italy is at high risk of earthquakes, landslides and flood. International literature highlighted the high frequency and severity of mental health consequences following natural disasters. Our review aims to evaluate: 1) the prevalence and risk factors for psychiatric consequences after natural disasters in Italy; 2) variation over time of the prevalence of psychiatric consequences as reported by the Italian studies We conducted a systematic literature review on psychiatric squealae of natural disasters occurred in Italy. We used three electronic databases: MEDLINE, PsychINFO and PILOTS. We found 25 studies reporting disease prevalence and/or symptoms measures. PTSD is the most frequently reported disorder, with a prevalence ranging from 0.3% to 41.3%. Only one study did not find an higher prevalence of mental disorders compared to non-exposed populations. Others reported disorders were depression, somatization and anxiety. The most frequently reported predictors of mental suffering were female gender, social and economic damage and direct involvement in the disaster. This review found a severe consequences on mental health following natural disasters occurred in Italy. There is a need of specific and ad hoc intervention plans not only for the immediate aftermath, but also for the medium-long-term period after natural disasters.