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Is psychosis in DSM-IV mania due to severity? The relevance of selected demographic and comorbid social-phobic features


Hagop S. Akiskal, VA Psychiatry Service 116A, 3350 La Jolla Village Drive, San Diego, CA 92161, USA.


Objective:  We tested whether factors other than episode severity contributed to psychosis in mania.

Method:  Psychiatrists collected systematic clinical data on 1090 hospitalized DSM-IV manic patients in France, and completed the Mania Rating Scale (MRS) and the Scale for the Assessment of Positive Symptoms (SAPS).

Results:  Using DSM-IV specifiers, 21.9% were non-severe, 28.2% severe without psychosis, and 49.9% severe with psychosis. On the MRS, patients with psychosis scored significantly higher (P < 0.0001) than non-severe, but did not differ from the severe without psychosis. We found significant correlations between both the Hallucination and the Delusion subscores of the SAPS and the MRS, as well as correlations between age, single marital status, comorbid social phobia and psychotic mania.

Conclusion:  Apart from episode severity, social isolation – associated with younger age, single marital status and social phobia – seems to make a contribution to the origin of manic psychosis largely independent from such severity.