Symptoms of depression and stress perception in medical students: Needs for attention and willingness to get help

Claudia Fouilloux, Silvia Aracely Tafoya, Virginia Barragán, Alejandra Navarro-Escalera, Esther Mahuina Campos-Castolo, Juan José Sánchez-Sosa


Objective. To assess medical students’ needs for care and the association of depressive symptoms and perceived stress with readiness to receive care. Method. Through a cross-sectional study, a total of 1,226 medical students from different years of university schooling participated. Participants responded to a digital survey including the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI); the Brief Illness Perception Questionnaire (BIPQ), modified for stress; and a questionnaire to assess care needs. Results. A total of 68% of participants expressed willingness to get help and 82% of these considered that the person who could best help them was a health professional. A total of 71% of those willing to get help preferred individual, face-to-face modality and 50% considered that help should take between 4 and 8 sessions. Lower willingness to get help was associated with very limited economic resources (OR = 2.58, p = .029), high depressive symptoms score (OR= 0.98, p = .046), and higher perception of stress (OR= 0.96, p < .0001). Conclusions: The increase of symptoms is the best indicator for the willingness to ask for help, sex and academic year do not seem to influence the willingness to seek help. 

Palabras clave

Needs for care; Medical students; Depressive symptoms; Perceived stress.

Texto completo:


  • Dra. Patricia Ortega Andeane. Editora       
  • Mtra. Maricela Irepan Aguilar. Editora Asociada
  • Dr. Octavio Salvador Ginez. Editor Asociado                                             ISSN digital: 2007-0810