Diagnostic and demographic characteristics of patients referred to a child and adolescent psychiatry clinic
Vahdet Görmez, Abdurrahman Cahid Örengül, Selenge Baljinnyam, Nigar Aliyeva
Objective: The aim of the present study is to examine the diagnostic categories of the patients referred to a child and adolescent psychiatry outpatient clinic and the relationship of such categories with age and gender.
Method: A total of 987 subjects aged between 5-18 years, who were referred to the Bezmialem University Hospital, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry outpatient clinic between July 2015 and May 2016 were enrolled and evaluated for their primary diagnoses and comorbidities using the Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia for School-Age Children-Present and Lifetime version (K-SADS-PL). For the diagnostic categories not included in the K-SADS-PL interview, a DSM-5 based clinical interviews were conducted. The relationship between diagnostic categories and variables such as age and gender were also studied in the current descriptive study.
Results: Consisting of a male dominant sample (n=630; 63.8%) with a mean age of 9.7±3.27 years, vast majority of the subjects (n=837; 84.8%) fulfilled the criteria for at least one DSM-5 diagnoses, while 15.2% had no diagnosis. Most common psychiatric diagnoses were attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) (n=319; 32.3%), specific phobia (n=252; 25.5%), oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) (n=128; 13%) and adjustment disorder (n=82; 8.3%). Male subjects were most frequently diagnosed with ADHD (n=257; 40.8%), specific phobia (n=143; 22.7%) and ODD (n=106; 16.8%), while specific phobia (n=109; 30.5%), ADHD (n=62; 17.4%) and adjustment disorders (n=43; 12%) were the most prevalent diagnoses among female subjects. Children aged 5 to 12 years had ADHD (n=273; 35.7%), specific phobia (n=194; 25.4%) and ODD (n=104; 13.6%) as the most common diagnoses, while for adolescents (age 13-18 years) specific phobia (n=58; 26%), ADHD (n=46; 20.6%) and depression (n=37; 16.6%) were respectively the most common diagnoses.
Conclusion: Identifying the most frequent diagnostic categories and comorbidities as well as their relationship with age and gender can provide helpful guidance in planning and organization of the child and psychiatry outpatient clinics and improve the quality of the mental health services provided.
Key words: child, adolescent, psychiatric diagnosis, outpatient clinic, DSM-5