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Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2007 Jan-Feb;29(1):45-50.

Dissociative disorders in the psychiatric emergency ward.

Author information

1
Department of Psychiatry, Clinical Psychotherapy Unit and Dissociative Disorders Program, Medical Faculty of Istanbul, University of Istanbul, Istanbul, Turkey. vsar@istanbul.edu.tr

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of dissociative disorders among emergency psychiatric admissions.

METHOD:

Forty-three of the 97 consecutive outpatients admitted to the psychiatric emergency unit of a university hospital were screened using the Dissociative Experiences Scale (DES). Seventeen (39.5% of the 43 evaluated) patients with a DES score above 25.0 were then interviewed with the Dissociative Disorders Interview Schedule and the Structured Clinical Interview for Dissociative Disorders.

RESULTS:

Fifteen emergency unit patients (34.9% of the 43 evaluated participants) were diagnosed as having a dissociative disorder. Six (14.0%) patients had dissociative identity disorder, 6 (14.0%) had dissociative disorder not otherwise specified, and 3 (7.0%) had dissociative amnesia. The average DES score of dissociative patients was 43.7. A majority of them had comorbid major depression, somatization disorder, and borderline personality disorder. Most of the patients with dissociative disorder reported auditory hallucinations, symptoms associated with psychogenic amnesia, flashback experiences, and childhood abuse and/or neglect.

CONCLUSIONS:

Dissociative disorders constitute one of the diagnostic groups with high relevance in emergency psychiatry.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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