Article |

The Iowa Record-Linkage Study:  III. Excess Mortality Among Patients With 'Functional' Disorders

Donald W. Black, MD; Giles Warrack, PhD; George Winokur, MD
Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1985;42(1):82-88. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1985.01790240084009.
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• Our investigation of the pattern of mortality among former inpatients in nine diagnostic groups was based on deaths found among 4,869 former inpatients of the University of Iowa Psychiatric Hospital, Iowa City, during a ten-year period. Comparisons were made with expected values based on a relevant Iowa control population. The first two years of followup was a period of great risk but not after. Excessive mortality from "unnatural" causes was found among patients of either sex with an affective disorder, schizophrenia, alcohol or other drug abuse, and personality disorders, among men with acute schizophrenia or neuroses, and among women with depressive neuroses. Women with acute schizophrenia or a psychophysiologic disorder or special symptom were at risk for a "natural" death. These findings confirm the risk of reduced life span that patients in all nine categories share.


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