Association of Internalizing Disorders and Allergies in a Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Clinical Sample [CME]
J Clin Psychiatry 2007;68(9):1419-1425
© Copyright 2015 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
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Objective: To investigate the specificity of
the association between internalizing disorders
(anxiety and depression) and atopic disorders
(asthma, allergic rhinitis, urticaria, and atopic
dermatitis) in a child and adolescent psychiatric
Method: A sample of 184 youths was
evaluated for current DSM-IV psychiatric disorders (clinical interview) and lifetime history of
atopic disorders (parent report and chart review) in
a child and adolescent psychiatry clinic from September 1, 2001, through December 31, 2002.
Logistic regression analyses were used to assess
the differential likelihood of having a lifetime
history of atopic disorders among psychiatrically
ill youths with and without internalizing disorders.
Results: Youths with internalizing
disorders were significantly more likely than those
with noninternalizing disorders to have a lifetime
history of atopic disorders (odds ratio [OR] =
1.95, 95% CI = 1.02 to 3.73, p = .04). Moreover,
analyses distinguishing youths with "pure"
internalizing disorders from those with comorbid
internalizing and externalizing disorders,
"pure" externalizing disorders, and other psychiatric
disorders showed that the association with atopic disorders was specific for "pure"
internalizing disorders only (OR = 2.40, 95% CI = 1.09
to 5.30, p = .03).
Conclusions: Atopic disorders may be
associated specifically with "pure" internalizing
disorders in psychiatrically ill youths.
Additional studies are needed to identify the
underlying mechanisms of this specificity for the
subsequent development of effective treatment and
prevention interventions that target both disorders.