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The Effect of Depression on Self-Harm and Treatment Outcome in Patients With Severe Dissociative Disorders
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by Jeremy C. Engelberg and Bethany L. Brand - Towson University
The first purpose of this study was to investigate whether patients
diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder (DID) with severe depression
attempt suicide or self-harm more than patients with less severe depression.
The second purpose was to determine whether depression severity had an
effect on treatment outcome in patients with DID. This study used data
gathered by researchers conducting the Treatment of Patients with
Dissociative Disorders (TOP DD) study (Brand, Classen, Lanius et al., 2009;
Brand et al., 2012). Patients completed self-report measures assessing a
broad range of their adaptive and dysfunctional behaviors and symptoms.
Analyses showed that depression severity had a statistically significant
positive correlation with self-harm (r = .24, p < .001) and suicide attempts
(r = .15, p = .02). Over 30 months of treatment, more severe depression was
associated with less improvement of impulsive actions (R
= .039, p = .045),
greater reduction in suicide attempts (p = .04), and greater involvement in
social activities (R
= .053, p = .02). These findings suggest that patients
diagnosed with DID who suffer from severe depression may be as likely to
improve in many outcomes as those who are less severely depressed.
Fall 2012 | Psi Chi Journal of Undergraduate Research (Vol. 14, No. 1, p. 35), published by Psi Chi, The International Honor Society in Psychology (Chattanooga, TN). Copyright, 2012, Psi Chi, The International Honor Society in Psychology. All rights reserved.