Levels of abuse in mentally ill women and its relationship with health care behavior – An exploratory study

D. Ram

Department of Psychiatry, JSS Medical College and Hospital, MG Road Agrahara, Mysore, India


Abuse is linked to mental illness, and associated morbidity & mortality in women. Self-management of health is unexplored in women with mental disorders, and this may have therapeutic and preventive implications. This study was conducted to know the level of abuse in women with mental disorder in remission and its relationship with self-management of health. 

Materials and Methods

In this cross sectional hospital based, single centered study, one hundred women were recruited as per selection criteria and assessed with sociodemographic proforma, Composite Abuse Scale (CAS) and Effective Consumer Scale (ECS). 


Eighty six percent had experienced abuse, and 68% percent had experienced severe level of abuse. CAS score was statistically significantly more with employed status (p = .000), poor housing condition (p = .000), substance use in the family (p = .005), low socioeconomic status (p = .003) and sympathetic attitude of others (p = .000). On multiple linear regression analysis, the level of abuse was negatively associated with ‘negotiation of roles and taking control’ domain (beta = -2.540, t = -2.036, p = .045), and positively associated with ‘taking decision and action’ (beta = 2.898, t = 2.329, p = .022) domain of ECS.


Abuse is very common among mentally ill women and negatively associated with health seeking skills in India. This finding underscores the urgent need for intervention to reduce abuse among mentally ill.

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