Mona Radwan

Mona Radwan

Zagazig University, Egypt

Title: Depression and substance abuse among refugees and immigrants of USA


Mona Radwan has completed her PhD from Zagazig University and Postdoctoral studies from Lund University, School of Medicine and School of Social Sciences respectively. She is one of the Member steering committees of Women in Great Sciences at Lund University (WINGS). She has published in reputed journals and has been serving as an Editorial Board Member of repute.


Mental health problems involving major depression disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and general anxiety disorder are familiar among lately arrived immigrants and refugees. Although many immigrants and refugees are resilient, traumatic experiences and resettlement stressors have an immense effect on their mental well-being. The study objective was to estimate the rate of major depression among refugees versus immigrants to United States of America and their relation to substance abuse. In 2004- 2005 our study was carried out as part of large survey directed to refugees who arrived after 1991 and immigrants who arrived before 1991 from Iraq to USA. Out of 5,490 participants, 350 were randomly selected of Iraqi born one, who lives in the greater Detroit of Michigan, USA. The study groups were classified into refugees and immigrants, furthermore divided into those with major depression and not. Participants were interviewed to answer standard questionnaire which include 103 questions. An informed consent had been taken from all participants in the study. Out of all the participants, 43.9% of the refugees have major depression which is significantly higher than immigrants; 11%, while the substance abuse was 49.7% among the immigrants significantly more than refugees; 41.5%. Moreover, years in USA, ethnicity, gender and smoking status are the predictors for the substance abuse among the study group; while gender, ethnicity, education and employment status are the predictors for the major depression among refugees. In conclusion there are multiple contributing factors to major depression and substance abuse among refugees than among immigrants.