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How common is adjustment disorder? 

How common is adjustment disorder?
How common is adjustment disorder?

Patricia Casey

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date: 23 October 2021

Most of the large-scale epidemiological studies have neglected AD, although there are some recent smaller studies that have included it. The diagnostic tools in common use, such as SCAN or SCID, either omit AD or only allow the diagnosis to be made when all other disorders have been considered. Studies using these have found a prevalence of less than 2% in the general population or among those attending primary care. Two instruments specific for AD have been published in recent years. The ADNM is a screening instrument based on the proposed ICD-11 criteria, while the DIAD is a diagnostic tool. With these instruments, the prevalence has been shown to be much higher than earlier studies indicated, and in some settings such as liaison psychiatry its frequency eclipsed that of major depression. It is likely that the enhanced status of AD will result in more epidemiological studies that incorporate AD as well as other common disorders.

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