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J Psychosom Res. 2002 Apr;52(4):187-91.

Conversion disorder in children and adolescents: a 4-year follow-up study.

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Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, Hacettepe University, PK 67 Samanpazari 06242, Ankara, Turkey.



To assess the outcome of conversion disorder in children and adolescents and to identify factors affecting the prognosis.


Forty adolescents with conversion disorder were reevaluated 4 years after their initial interview. Changes in demographic and clinical data and the presence of any mood and anxiety disorders were recorded using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis I Disorder (SCID-I). In addition, Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) were applied.


Thirty-four patients (85%) had completely recovered from their conversion symptoms and two patients had improved (5%), whereas only four (10%) were unchanged. Fourteen (35%) patients received the diagnosis of mood and/or anxiety disorder. Favourable outcome was associated with early diagnosis (P=.04) and good premorbid adjustment (P=.01).


Conversion disorder has a favourable outcome in children and adolescents. However, mood and/or anxiety disorders are encountered at a considerable rate in these patients even after recovery from conversion symptoms. Long clinical follow-up seems appropriate in children and adolescents with conversion disorder.

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