Factors Associated with Pathological Dissociation in the General Population

Department of Psychiatry, Kuopio University Hospital, Kuopio, Northern Savo, Finland
Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 3.41). 06/2005; 39(5):387-94. DOI: 10.1111/j.1440-1614.2005.01586.x
Source: PubMed


This study assessed the prevalence of pathological dissociation in the general population, and the relationship between pathological dissociation and sociodemographic and several psychiatric variables.
The stratified population sample consisted of 2001 subjects. The study questionnaires included the Dissociative Experiences Scale, the Dissociative Experiences Scale-Taxon, the Toronto Alexithymia Scale, the Beck Depression Inventory, and sociodemographic background.
The prevalence of pathological dissociation (DES-T >/= 20) was 3.4% in the general population and did not differ significantly between genders. Men scored higher than women in the amnesia subscale, and women in the absorption and imaginative involvement subscale. The relationship between pathological dissociation, alexithymia, depression and suicidality was strong. The likelihood of pathological dissociation was nearly nine-fold higher among depressive subjects, more than seven-fold higher among alexithymic subjects, and more than four-fold higher among suicidal subjects than among the others. Frequent alcohol consumption also associated significantly with pathological dissociation.
A significant relationship between pathological dissociation, depression, alexithymia, and suicidality was found in the general population. The importance of these factors should be examined in a prospective study design to determine causality.

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Available from: Päivi Maaranen, Oct 09, 2015
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    • "Despite DD patients' evident safety struggles, few studies on self-harm focus specifically on DD patients, and most studies are either non-empirical or utilize mixed psychiatric populations (e.g., Boon & Draijer, 1993; Cerutti, Presaghi, Manca, & Gratz, 2012; Foote et al., 2008; Kluft, 1995; Loewenstein & Putnam, 1990; Maaranen et al., 2005; van der Kolk et al., 1991; Saxe et al., 2002; Yargiç et al., 1998). One exception is Engelberg and Brand (2012), who examined patient-reported self-harm over the 30-month TOP DD study and found depression severity positively correlated with patient-reported NSSI and negatively correlated with patientreported suicide attempts. "
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    ABSTRACT: The present study investigates whether symptom severity can distinguish patients diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder (DID) and dissociative disorder not otherwise specified (DDNOS) with a recent history of non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) and suicide attempts from those without recent self-harm. Two hundred forty one clinicians reported on recent history of patient NSSI and suicide attempts. Two hundred twenty-one of these clinicians' patients completed dissociative, depressive, and posttraumatic stress disorder symptomatology measures. Baseline cross-sectional data from a naturalistic and prospective study of dissociative disorder (DD) patients receiving community treatment was utilized. Analyses evaluated dissociative, depressive, and PTSD symptom severity as methods of classifying patients into NSSI and suicide attempt groupings. Results indicated that dissociation severity accurately classified patients into NSSI and suicidality groups, while depression severity accurately classified patients into NSSI groups. These findings point to dissociation and depression severity as important correlates of NSSI and suicidality in patients with DDs, and have implications for self-harm prevention and treatment.
    Journal of Trauma & Dissociation 07/2015; DOI:10.1080/15299732.2015.1067941 · 1.72 Impact Factor
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    • "Therefore, a good place to look for dissociation is among the general psychiatric patients. Studies show that dissociation can be found in co-occurrence with many psychiatric disorders such as borderline personality disorder, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (Maaranen, 2005;Rufer, Fricke, Held, Cremer, & Hand, 2006; Zanarini, 2008) and schizophrenia, with discussion of the existence of a possible dissociative subtype of schizophrenia (Sar&Ozturk, 2009; Sar et al., 2009). Dissociation can be found in co-occurrence not just with disorders, but with many other phenomena and symptoms such as auto aggressive behavior, suicidal attempts, trichotillomania, alexithymia, faith in paranormal (Varga, Dafinoiu, Ile, Bredicean, &Rdu, 2013), chronic pain and pain syndromes (Saxe et. "
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    ABSTRACT: Since dissociation is a broad concept, there is heterogeneity both in the results and in the research methodology concerning it. The purpose of this paper is to list and discuss research methods on the general topic of dissociation. We discuss the assessment of dissociation related to its different conceptualizations, non-experimental methods and potential populations for study, and finally, already tried, as well as hypothetical methods to experimentally induce state dissociation. Although there is a wide array of research methods, there is a lack of studies aimed specifically at validity and the comparison of different ways to experimentally induce dissociation.
    Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences 05/2015; 187:329-333. DOI:10.1016/j.sbspro.2015.03.061
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    • "This can include the absence of expectable experiences (e.g., memories of one's own behaviors), the distortion of expectable experiences (e.g., feeling as though one is floating above one's own body), and/or intrusion into expectable experiences (e.g., flashbacks; Braun, 1988; Dell, 2009). Studies within the general population have found that a majority of individuals espouse having had at least some degree of minor dissociative experience (Ross, Joshi, & Currie, 1991), whereas other research found an approximately 1%–5% prevalence for clinical dissociation at levels that would fulfill criteria for a dissociative disorder (Johnson, Cohen, Kasen, & Brook, 2006; Maarenan et al., 2004; Vanderlinden, Van der Hart, & Varga, 1996). Meanwhile, prevalence rates within psychiatric settings appear to range much higher, estimated at 4%–29% for dissociative disorders overall (Foote et al., 2006; Saxe et al., 1993). "
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    ABSTRACT: Extant research indicates that dissociation may act as a risk factor for non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI), but the data are mixed. In this study, 75 university and community females, aged 18-35, were assessed for rates of normative, clinical, and severely clinical dissociation, as well as for NSSI. Significant differences in normative dissociation were found between the control group and the group reporting a history of NSSI. Additionally, normative dissociation - but not clinical or severely clinical dissociation - was found to be significantly associated with NSSI in this sample. Considering this finding in the context of existing literature, the authors propose a quartile risk model of dissociation and NSSI as a new approach to the influences of levels of dissociation on NSSI risk.
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