|BRIEF RESEARCH ARTICLE
|Year : 2017 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 114-117
Psychiatric morbidity in a selective sample of transgenders in Imphal, Manipur: A descriptive study
Y R Niranjan Hebbar, Bihari Singh
Department of Psychiatry, Regional Institute of Medical Sciences, Imphal, Manipur, India
|Date of Web Publication||8-Dec-2017|
Y R Niranjan Hebbar
Department of Psychiatry, Rims, Imphal, Manipur
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Aim: Psychiatric morbidities seem to be one of the biggest hurdles in the stigmatized people of transgender. Lack of knowledge and ignorance with ever-growing abuse over this population make them vulnerable for mental instability. This study is an attempt to identify and access the psychiatric morbidities of gender dysphoric people of Imphal, Manipur. Materials and Methods: Using DSM-5 all qualified, consenting gender dysphoric people were assessed for psychiatric morbidities using Mini-International Neuropsychiatry Interview-Plus scale at Imphal, Manipur, and the results were compared using Chi-square test. Results: Substance use disorders were found in the majority of them. Twenty (62.5%) of them had current alcohol abuse, and 10 (31.2%) of them were dependent of alcohol. Fifteen (46.8%) of them were abusing other nonalcoholic psychotropic drugs. Twelve (37.5%) were suffering from generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) followed by 10 (31.2%) with current depressive disorder. Past suicidal attempts were found among 10 (31.2%) of them with 14 (41.2%) out of them for having current suicidal risk. Six (18.7%) of them were having dysthymia, 2 (6.2%) had panic disorder, 3 (9.4%) had agoraphobia and posttraumatic stress disorder, respectively, 8 (25%) suffered from social phobia, and 1 (3.2%) from specific phobia for spiders. Conclusions: This study found high prevalence of comorbid psychiatric disorders of which alcohol use disorder was the prominent one. Other psychiatric disorders such as GAD, depression, and suicidal risk were also found to be higher among these people. As this population is at higher risk of developing other psychiatric problems, regular screening and timely intervention is needed to prevent or treat psychiatric comorbidities.
Keywords: Depression, DSM-5, gender dysphoria, generalized anxiety disorder, substance use disorder, suicidal risk
|How to cite this article:|
Hebbar Y R, Singh B. Psychiatric morbidity in a selective sample of transgenders in Imphal, Manipur: A descriptive study. Ann Indian Psychiatry 2017;1:114-7
|How to cite this URL:|
Hebbar Y R, Singh B. Psychiatric morbidity in a selective sample of transgenders in Imphal, Manipur: A descriptive study. Ann Indian Psychiatry [serial online] 2017 [cited 2020 Feb 28];1:114-7. Available from: http://www.anip.co.in/text.asp?2017/1/2/114/220245
| Introduction|| |
Being a transgender is a rare condition where there is a constant discrepancy between the biologically assigned sex and the identity of gender which is associated with significant impairment in social, occupational, interpersonal, and the other areas of functioning. Transgender is been included under the spectrum of gender dysphoria in DSM-5 and under gender identity disorder (GID) according to ICD-10. DSM 5 prevalence of gender dysphoria in adults from the United States was 1 in 30,000 in men and 1 in 100,000 in women. 2011 census in India accounted for around 4.9 lakhs of transgender in India. Although exact prevalence of this population is unavailable, trends across different studies suggest that gender dysphoria is more common in natal males than natal females with a prevalence ratio of 3:1., The worldwide lifetime prevalence is estimated to be 0.001–0.002.
Controversies raged post Supreme Court judgment in 2013 which rejected the earlier Delhi High Court judgment on Article 377. However, a recent landmark judgment by Supreme Court of India on April 15, 2014 has identified transgender people as the third gender and has ordered the government to provide transgenders with quotas in jobs and education in line with other minorities, as well as key amenities.
Though Indian data is sparse, review of literature regarding persons with gender dysphoria shows higher rates of psychological problems and psychiatric disorders, such as negative self-image, low self-esteem, adjustment disorders, depression, suicidality, and personality disorders compared to normal controls.,,,
”Stress minority model” suggests that the stress associated with stigma, preoccupied negative image of self, and discrimination will have direct impact on the psychological well-being of the transgender population.,
This is one such study focused on determining the existing psychiatric problems in these sexual minority people of Imphal, Manipur.
| Materials and Methods|| |
It was a cross-sectional, single interview study conducted after Institutional Ethical Committee approval. Thirty-two cases who fulfilled the criteria of gender dysphoria according to DSM-5 were included for the study. All consenting transgenders aged above 18 years were interviewed at their workplaces/locality with the help of a NGO organization (All Manipuri Nupi Manbi Association) which works for the wellfare of transgender people of Manipur. Nonprobability convenience sampling was used for the selection of the transgenders during the study period. Those having significant neurological diseases or any comorbid medical illness were excluded along with nonwilling cases.
After written informed consent, each transgender was interviewed individually. Semi-structured pro forma was used for assessing sociodemographic profile and Mini-International Neuropsychiatry Interview (MINI)-PLUS scale for assessing psychiatric morbidities.
MINI-PLUS is a brief structured interview for assessing major axis one psychiatric disorders, which has a acceptably high validation and reliability scores and can be administered in a much shorter period of time (mean 18.7 ± 11.6 min, median 15 min) was used.
The data collected was checked, entered, and processed using Statistical package for Windows, version 16.0. Chicago, SPSS Inc. Chi-square test and Fisher's exact were used to find significance. P < 0.05 was considered significant for this study.
| Results|| |
The study included 20 male to female transgender (MTF) and 12 female to male transgender (FTM) with a mean duration of 27.13 years and standard deviation of 5.8 years. Maximum of 20 (62.5%) were hailing from urban settings. Nineteen (59.3%) of them did not complete their secondary schooling. Although 20 (62.5%) of them were employed. Family support and acceptance were seen only in 5 (15.6%) of them. Only 2 (10%) were staying in joint family and the rest were from nuclear family. Four (12.5%) of them had history of sexual abuse in their childhood [Table 1].
Substance abuse was on the top among psychiatric morbidities. Twenty (62.5%) of them had current alcohol abuse and 10 (31.2%) of them were dependent of alcohol. Fifteen (46.8%) of them were abusing other nonalcoholic psychotropic drugs. Twelve (37.5%) were suffering from generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) followed by 10 (31.2%) with current depressive disorder. Past suicidal attempts were found among 10 (31.2%) of them and 14 (41.2%) out of them have current suicidal risk. 6 (18.7%) of them had dysthymia, 2 (6.2%) had panic disorder. In our study, the prevalence of agoraphobia and social phobia were 9.4% and 25% receptively. 1(3.2%) of them also suffered from specific phobia for spiders. 3(9.4%) of them were found to be suffering from post traumatic stress disorder(PTSD). Although most of them were found in MTF transgender than in FTM, no statistical significance was found [Table 2].
|Table 2: Psychiatric morbidities assessed using mini-international neuropsychiatry interview plus|
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| Discussion|| |
George et al. in 2015 studied quality of life of transgender older adults at Bangalore, Karnataka and reported only 38.3% of people completed their primary school of education and 75% of them used to beg for their living and 90% of them used to live separately away from their home. Our study found 59.3% of the cases completed their primary schooling and 62.5% of them were self-employed, mostly in saloons and beauty parlors and none used to beg for their living and only 37.5% in our study used to live with their parents. Significant differences in the sociodemographic profile may be due to cultural and social differences across the states [Table 1].
Kussin-Shoptaw et al. reported around 84.9% of transgender women experienced physical or sexual abuse at some point in their lifetime. In our study, sexual abuse was only found in 12.5% of them. Lower familial coherence and adaptability were found by Kim et al. in 2006. In our study, we found good family support and acceptance in only 15.6% of the total [Table 1].
Reisner et al. found lifetime and current major depressive episode of 35.4% and 14.7%, respectively, among their study group. Similar to this, our study found past episode of depression of 34.4% and current depression of 31.2% [Table 2].
Suicidality, GAD and PTSD were reported among 20.2%, 7.9%, and 9.8% by Reisner et al. in their study group. Our study found 43% of the study population to have current suicidal risks and 31.2% past suicidal attempts. GAD and PTSD were found in 37.5% and 9.4% in our study [Table 2]. Higher prevalence of these disorders can also be explained as the overall prevalence of mental health disorders in Manipur (14.4%) itself is high, as evidenced by recent national mental health survey 2015–2016.
Alcohol dependence of 11.2% and nonalcohol psychoactive substance use dependence of 15.2% were found by Reisner et al. in their study group. Whereas we found 31.2% of alcohol dependence and 46.8% of nonalcoholic psychoactive substance among our group [Table 2]. Higher prevalence of substance use disorder may be explained due to its geographical location, as Manipur is a part of “Golden Triangle” which is known for illicit drug trafficking.
| Conclusions|| |
This study found high prevalence of comorbid psychiatric disorders of which alcohol use disorder was the prominent one. Other psychiatric disorders such as GAD, depression, and suicide risk were also higher. As this population is at higher risk of developing other psychiatric problems, regular screening and timely intervention are needed to prevent or treat psychiatric comorbidities.
Suicidality was assessed using the MINI-Plus interview, which was also used to measure Axis I disorders; therefore, we could not investigate whether there was an association between suicide risk and having an Axis I disorder. Smaller sample size and selection bias from NGO. Hence, results cannot be generalized.
We would like to thank SAATI foundation for continuous support and help.
Financial support and sponsorship
Conflicts of interest
There are no conflicts of interest.
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[Table 1], [Table 2]