Brain Fag: West Africa – Case Study Example

Brain Fag Brain fag is a “type of neurotic disorder that was first observed in white collar workers in Africa” (Health Grades Inc). It is a culture-bund syndrome, which was commonly used as a term for mental exhaustion or an overworked brain (Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.). It is a disease with numerous symptoms and is the subject of some studies today. Brain fag carries the following symptoms: impaired ability to concentrate, impaired information retention, irritability, agitation and nervousness among others (Health Grades Inc). This illness is seen predominantly in male African students and a Nigerian study in 2002 revealed that proficiency in English is a risk factor to this illness (Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.).
According to McGill Cultural Consultation Service of the Jewish General Hospital identified the following cultural factors related to Psychosocial Environment and Levels of Functioning: social stressors such as current political situation in country of origin and in host country, social supports such as the identification of most important current and past sources of support for the individual and the family, and the levels of functioning and disability (McGill University).
Since this topic has been prevalent, psychiatric clinicians have attempted to create methods in ascertaining the cultural factors that affect mental disorders. Currently, practitioners use the Cultural Formulation model. It consists of five components; assessing cultural identities, cultural explanation of the illness, cultural factors related to the psychosocial environment and levels of functioning, cultural elements of the clinician-patient relationship and the over-all impact of culture on diagnosis and care (Roberto Lewis-Fernandez).
Works Cited
Health Grades Inc. http://www.wrongdiagnosis.com. 31 March 2009. 14 April 2009 .
McGill University. http://www.mcgill.ca. 9 March 2009. 14 April 2009 .
Roberto Lewis-Fernandez, Naelys Diaz. "The cultural formulation: A method for assessing cultural factors affecting the clinical encounter." Psychiatric quarterly 73 (2002): 271-295.
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. http://en.wikipedia.org. 5 January 2009. 14 April 2009 .