Medicolegal Aspects of Mental Disorders: A Retrospective Study during the Period 2005-2010

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Forensic Medicine and Clinical Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, Assiut University, Assiut, Egypt

2 Ministry of Justice, Assiut, Egypt


The World is suffering from an increasing burden of mental disorders and a widening treatment gap; about 450 million people worldwide suffer from a mental disorder or behavioral disorders.
This study evaluate the size of the mental disorder problem in Assuit Governorate during the period from 2005 to 2010 through collection of cases of mental disorders files from archive of Assuit Medico-Legal Department of Ministry of Justice during the period from 2005 to 2010. Methods: Data of cases suffering from mental disorders was collected from the archive of Assiut Medico-Legal Department of Ministry of Justice during the period from 2005 – 2010. The collected data included number of mental disorders cases, age, sex, and residence, sociodemographic factors, type of complaint of the plaintiff, the common types of mental disorders, and types of the problems with mental disorders civil or criminal. Results: The total number of the cases with mental disorders in the period from 2005 to 2010 was 163 cases, the highest percent of mental disorders cases occurred in the year 2008 with a percent of 19, 64 % from all mental disorders cases during the period from 2005 to 2010 followed by the year 2009 with a percent of 19% while the lowest number of cases was in 2006 with a percent of 11.66 %. The highest frequency of mental disorders occurred in the middle age group from 20- < 30 years, with male predominance. Males represent about triple the number of females. The frequency of mental disorders was the highest in Assiut City (65) cases (39.88 %) while the least percentage was 2 cases (1.23 %) in El Ghanaime. Most of the cases (61.59 %) had with primary mental disorders while only (37.43 %) had secondary mental disorders and both of them were  more common in males. The Classification according to psychiatric consultants who contracting with the Assuit Medico-Legal Department of Ministry of Justice. The majority of cases (159 cases) in this study were presented with civil problems and only 4 cases were presented with criminal problems. Conclusion: the problem of mental disorder is considered one of the challenges that face the Egyptian community so all efforts must cooperate to eliminate and treat all the problems associated with it.