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Depersonalisation disorder: clinical features of 204 cases

BAKER, D., HUNTER, E., LAWRENCE, E., MEDFORD, N., PATEL, M., SENIOR, C., SIERRA, M., LAMBERT, M. V., PHILLIPS, Mary L and DAVID, A. S. 2003. Depersonalisation disorder: clinical features of 204 cases. British Journal of Psychiatry 182 (5) , pp. 428-433. 10.1192/bjp.182.5.428

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BACKGROUND: Depersonalisation disorder is a poorly understood and underresearched syndrome. AIMS: To carry out a large and comprehensive clinical and psychopathological survey of a series of patients who made contact with a research clinic. METHOD: A total of 204 consecutive eligible referrals were included: 124 had a full psychiatric examination using items of the Present State Examination to define depersonalisation/derealisation and 80 had either a telephone interview (n=22) or filled out a number of self-report questionnaires. Cases assessed were diagnosed according to DSM-IV criteria. RESULTS: The mean age of onset was 22.8 years; early onset was associated with greater severity. There was a slight male preponderance. The disorder tended to be chronic and persistent. Seventy-one per cent met DSM-IV criteria for primary depersonalisation disorder. Depersonalisation symptom scores correlated with both anxiety and depression and a past history of these disorders was commonly reported. 'Dissociative amnesia' was not prominent. CONCLUSIONS: Depersonalisation disorder is a recognisable clinical entity but appears to have significant comorbidity with anxiety and depression. Research into its aetiology and treatment is warranted.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics (CNGG)
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Publisher: Royal College of Psychiatrists
ISSN: 0007-1250
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2015 10:37

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