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Vol. 32, No. 4, 1999
Issue release date: July–August 1999

Psychiatric Morbidity in Disintegrative Psychosis and Infantile Autism:A Long-Term Follow-Up Study

Mouridsen S.E. · Rich B. · Isager T.
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In order to study the validity of disintegrative psychosis (DP), the authors compared 13 patients given this diagnosis in childhood with a control group of 39 patients with infantile autism (IA) matched for sex, age, IQ and social class on measures of psychiatric morbidity. Almost the same proportion of the two groups had been admitted to a psychiatric hospital during a 22-year follow-up period. However, there was a slight tendency (statistically nonsignificant) for the DP group to utilize the psychiatric health care system more frequently than the IA group. They had more admissions and stayed longer in hospital than patients with IA suggesting that they had more psychiatric symptoms than the IA group. The original IA diagnoses were confirmed fairly consistently during the follow-up period, while the DP group was given more heterogenous diagnoses. No diagnosis of schizophrenia was made in either group.

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