Aim. Assessment ofprevalence andfactors connected with abnormal body weight inpatients with non-organic mental illness admitted to a psychiatric ward.
Methods. A group of 210 schizophrenic, affective and adjustment disorder patients underwent a study procedure aimed at assessing the prevalence of those who are underweight, overweight and obese. The relation between BMI and some demographic factors, as factors connected with the illness, was analyzed.
Results. Out of all the patients that were tested, 8.1% were underweight while 47.6% were overweight. There was no relation observed between BMI and clinical diagnosis, as well as sex, educational level and employment. A positive correlation was observed between BMI and age, the presence of a life partner, antipsychotic medication, duration of the illness and the number of previous hospitalizations; however the negative correlation occurred between BMI and abusing the alcohol or other psychoactive substances. In the analysis of regression different predictors of high BMI in different diagnostic groups were found. In the case ofpatients with adjustment disorders it was low educational level, and having life partner; in schizophrenia the age of the patients and taking antipsychotics whereas no predictors as such were identified in patients with affective disorders.
Conclusions. Being overweight and underweight seem to be important features to take into account in the patients admitted to psychiatric wards. In schizophrenia the positive correlation between BMI and medication with antipsychotics underlines the need for monitoring metabolic parameters, and introducing appropriate education to the patients and their families. Among the patients with adjustment disorder the risk factors seem to be connected with the culture and customs. There exists a need for investigation of the risk factors for overweight patients in largerofpatients with affective disorders.