Epidemiology of Major Depressive Disorder in Iran: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Behnam Sadeghirad, Ali-Akbar Haghdoost, Masoumeh Amin-Esmaeili, Esmaeil Shahsavand Ananloo, Padideh Ghaeli, Afarin Rahimi-Movaghar, Elham Talebian, Ali Pourkhandani, Ahmad Ali Noorbala, Esmat Barooti


Objectives: There are a large number of primary researches on the
prevalence of major depressive disorder (MDD) in Iran; however,
their findings are varied considerably. A systematic review was
performed in order to summarize the findings.
Methods: Electronic and manual searches in international and
Iranian journals were conducted to find relevant studies reporting
MDD prevalence. To maximize the sensitivity of the search, the
references of relevant papers were also explored. We explored the
potential sources of heterogeneity such as diagnostic tools, gender
and other characteristics using meta-regression model. The combined
mean prevalence rates were calculated for genders, studies
using each type of instruments and for each province using metaanalysis
Results: From 44 articles included in the systematic review, 24
reported current prevalence and 20 reported lifetime prevalence of
MDD. The overall estimation of current prevalence of MDD was
4.1% (95% CI: 3.1-5.1). Women were 1.95 (95% CI: 1.55-2.45)
times more likely to have MDD. The current prevalence of MDD
in urban inhabitants was not significantly different from rural
inhabitants. The analysis identified the variations in diagnostic
tools as an important source of heterogeneity.
Conclusions: Although there is not adequate information on
MDD prevalence in some areas of Iran, the overall current prevalence
of MDD in the country is high and females are at the greater
risk of disease.
Keywords: Depressive disorder; Mental health; Epidemiology;
Prevalence, Review; Meta-analysis.

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