Study of anxiety-depressive disorders among doctors at "Salah Azaïez" Cancer Institute in Tunis


Imene Yeddes
Khadija Meddeb
Amina Mokrani
Imene Boukhris
Houyem Khiari


Introduction: Oncologists are often confronted with patients at the end of their lives who are suffering. This can lead to anxiety and depressive disorders (ADD), affecting the quality of the doctors’s quality of life

Aim: To compare the level of ADD among doctors practicing at Salah Azaiez Institute (SAI) in Tunis with doctors who do not treat cancer patients, while identifying any factors associated with these disorders.

Methods: We conducted a comparative and analytical study of 141 physicians:53 oncologists practicing at the Salah Institut Azaiez and 91 at other hospital structures (Charles Nicolle’s Hospital and Rabta’s Hospital), matched by age and gender for a period of 2 months, started from 02 May to 30 June 2022.

Results: Our research showed that SAI’s doctors were significantly more exposed to anxiety disorders (p= 0.016) compared with other doctors (47.2% vs. 37.5%), without being more exposed to depressive disorders. SAI’s doctors reported more associated stress factors, notably exposure to body image-distorting tumors (p<0.001), exposure to the suffering of loved ones (p=0.006), lack of human resources (p=0.017), perceived unsuitability of premises (p=0.001) and overwork (p=0.013). These doctors consumed more alcohol (p=0.04). In addition, 58.5% of SAI’s doctors felt that their profession significantly affected their quality of life, compared to 45% of doctors in other hospitals (p=0.04)

Conclusions: All the doctors questioned, "all specialties combined", showed varying rates of anxiety and depressive disorders. However, anxiety disorders were significantly higher among SAI’s doctors, for whom stress factors had a greater impact.


physician, oncologist, cancer, depressive disorder, anxiety disorder



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