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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 26  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 40-48

Profile of patients seen in the emergency setting: A retrospective study involving data of 5563 patients

Department of Psychiatry, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Sandeep Grover
Department of Psychiatry, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh - 160 012
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jmhhb.jmhhb_18_21

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Background: There are limited numbers of studies from India, which have evaluated the demographic and clinical profile of patients seen in the emergency setting. Aim: This retrospective study aimed to evaluate the profile of the patients, seen in the emergency setting by a psychiatry team. Methodology: The psychiatry emergency register was reviewed for the data for 6 calendar years (2014–2019), for the demographic and clinical profile. Results: 5563 patients were evaluated by the emergency psychiatry team during the period of 6 years, with the number of patients seen in each calendar year varying from 693 to 1057. The mean age of the patients availing psychiatry emergency services was 38.35 years (standard deviation: 16.65), with a significant proportion (13.1%–16.7%) of them in the elderly age group. Majority of the patients were male (64.6%) and were seen initially by the medicine and allied branches (87.8%). The most common diagnosis was delirium, and this was followed by affective disorders. Substantial proportions of the patients had substance use disorders (18.5%) and self-harm (9.8%). Nearly four-fifths of the patients were managed with psychotropic medications, and nearly one-fifth were treated with psychotherapeutic interventions, while more than half underwent investigations. Conclusion: The present study suggests that delirium, followed by affective disorders, substance use disorders, and intentional self-harm are the most common psychiatric diagnoses, among patients seen in the emergency setting. These findings can have important implications for organizing the psychiatric services in the emergency setting and for training.

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