Clare Lewis, Psy.D.
The incidence of anxiety and depression will be greater in physical therapy students than in the general public and that incidence will be similar to that seen in medical and law students.
Physical therapy as a professional program has not been studied in terms of connecting the stress level inherent in this course of study with resultant anxiety and depression; therefore, the question remains: what is the incidence of anxiety and depression among physical therapy students?
Many studies can be found in the literature that have been conducted to explore the incidence of anxiety and depression in medical students. (Aktekin, Karaman, Senol, Erdem, Erengin & Akaydin, 2001; Becker, 1995; Clark & Zeldow, 1988; Clark & Zeldow, 1988; Hendrie, Clair, Brittain, & Fadul, 1989; Hojat, Glaser, Gang, Veloski & Christian, 1999; Lloyd &Gartrell, 1984; Lu, 1994; Mitchell, Matthews, Grandy, & Lupo, 1983; Notman, Salt & Nadelson, 1984; Parkerson, Broadhead & Tse, 1990; Russo, Miller & Vitaliano; 1985; Shapiro, Schwartz & Bonner, 1998; Stewart, Betson Lam, Marshall, Lee, & Wong, 1997; Stewart, Betson, Marshall & Wong, 1995; Stewart, Lam, Betson, Wong & Wong, 1999; Tyssen, Vaglum, Gronvold & Ekeberg, 2001; Vitaliano, Majuro, Russo & Mitchell, 1988; Vitaliano, Majuro, Russo & Mitchell, 1989; Vitaliano, Majuro, Russo & Mitchell, 1989; Wolf, Scurria & Webster, 1998) Medical school has long been known to be quite stressful and to cause significant distress for the students (Shapiro, et al., 1998).