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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 138-144

Pattern of psychiatric presentation of patients coming to the emergency unit of psychiatry department of a tertiary care teaching hospital in West Bengal

Institute of Psychiatry – A Centre of Excellence, IPGMER and SSKM Hospital, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Soumi Ghosh
Flat No. 202, Kalimata Abasan, 60, Ram Sita Ghat Street, Bhadrakali, Uttarpara, Hooghly - 712 232, West Bengal
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/tjp.tjp_37_21

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Background: Psychiatric emergencies are characterized by acute conditions of disturbances of affect or mood, behavior, and thoughts, which, if not managed with immediate therapeutic intervention, can cause great harm to the patient and surroundings. In most of the institutions, due to lack of emergency psychiatric units, these are managed by general hospital emergency units, which is the reason for underreporting of psychiatric cases in developing countries like India. Aim: The aim is to study the pattern of psychiatric presentation of the patients coming to the psychiatric emergency unit of a tertiary care teaching hospital in West Bengal. Methods: This prospective, longitudinal, hospital-based study was conducted for a period of 3 months on patients attending the psychiatric emergency unit of a tertiary care teaching hospital in West Bengal. Clinical details of the patient, source and reason for referral, and presenting complaints were recorded and analyzed. Results: Out of 200 patients attending the psychiatric emergency unit, most were female aged between 21 and 40 years. The three most prevalent presenting complaints among subjects were abnormal behavior with somatic complaints, excitement, and violent behavior followed by substance use. The foremost reason for a referral from other departments was either due to the absence of any physical illness or no abnormalities detected in the investigations conducted. Conclusions: The results from the study could help in gaining knowledge regarding emergency psychiatric conditions, increase in preparedness for their rapid management, and improvement of emergency psychiatry services to meet the mental healthcare demands in our country.

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