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Child Psychiatry Hum Dev. 2008 Dec;39(4):427-38. doi: 10.1007/s10578-008-0100-2. Epub 2008 Mar 22.

Psychiatric correlates of nonsuicidal cutting behaviors in an adolescent inpatient sample.

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  • 1Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies, The Warren Alpert Medical School at Brown University, Box G-121-4, Providence, RI 02912, USA.


This archival study of 288 adolescent psychiatric inpatients examined the psychiatric correlates of cutting behavior. Participants were categorized into Threshold cutters (n = 61), Subthreshold cutters (n = 43), and Noncutters (n = 184). Groups were compared on psychiatric diagnoses, suicidality, and self-reported impairment. Results demonstrated that females were more likely to cut relative to males; however, gender did not affect the correlates of cutting behavior. Adolescents in the Threshold group were more likely to be diagnosed with Major Depression and had higher self-reported suicidality, depression, and trauma-related symptoms of depression and dissociation relative to the Noncutting group. The Subthreshold group did not differ from the other groupings except for an elevated risk for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder compared to the Noncutting group.

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