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Ajdacic-Gross, V; Horvath, S; Canjuga, M; Gamma, A; Angst, J; Rössler, W; Eich, D (2006). How ubiquitous are physical and psychological complaints in young and middle adulthood? A longitudinal perspective. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 41(11):881-888.

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OBJECTIVES: To investigate continuity and change of self-reported physical and psychological complaints in young adults over a period of 20 years. STUDY DESIGN AND SETTING: The Zurich Study--a long-term panel survey in psychiatric epidemiology--is based on a stratified sample of 591 subjects born in 1958 (women) and 1959 (men). The sample strata combine SCL-90-R high-scorers and low-scorers in a 2:1 ratio. Up to now, the Zurich Study has included six interviews between 1979 and 1999, i.e. 20 years of life in young adults. We analysed the longitudinal frequency data of a variety of physical and psychological complaints, as well as information about subjective suffering and use of professional help. The analyses utilised on the McNemar's test, the Q-test and Markov chain models. RESULTS: Sleep disorders, depression, menstruation, backache, headache, stomach and bowel complaints yielded cumulative prevalence rates of 80% or higher. Physical and psychological complaints systematically differ with respect to the change patterns between 1979 and 1999. Moreover, strong differences were found in view of subjective suffering and use of professional help. CONCLUSIONS: Even though many self-reported physical and psychological complaints are very common in young adulthood, the underlying dynamics and the implications largely differ. It seems to be crucial whether respondents use somatic glasses or psychological lenses.


5 citations in Web of Science®
5 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Psychiatric University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Clinical and Social Psychiatry Zurich West (former)
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Uncontrolled Keywords:Adult - Female - Health Status - Humans - Incidence - Longitudinal Studies - Male - Middle Aged - Prevalence - Psychophysiologic Disorders/diagnosis/epidemiolog/psychology - Questionnaires
Deposited On:29 Sep 2011 10:43
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:01
Publisher DOI:10.1007/s00127-006-0111-x
PubMed ID:16964450

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