ARCH Lab Publishes Another Paper using MY LIFE Study Data

The ARCH Lab has published another paper on the cohort participating in the Multimorbidity in Youth across the Life-course (MY LIFE) Study. The paper, “Continuity of mental disorders in children with chronic physical illness” was published in European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and includes data up to and including the 24-month follow-up.

Authors examined the prevalence and predictors of homotypic (within-disorder) and heterotypic (between-disorder) continuity of mental disorder in children with chronic physical illness (CPI) via parent and child-reported mental disorders (mood, anxiety, behavioral, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder [ADHD]) using the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview.

Mental disorder was observed in 24-27% of children with CPI based on child reports and 35-39% based on parent reports. Child disability (ORs = 1.3-1.5) and parent psychopathology (ORs = 1.2-1.8) were the most consistent predictors of both child- and parent-reported mental disorder over time.

Parent-reported models revealed significant homotypic continuity for all mental disorders (ORs = 4.2-9.5), and heterotypic continuity between mood and anxiety disorders (OR = 2.2), ADHD and behavioral disorders (OR = 5.1), and behavioral and each mental disorder (ORs = 6.7-8.4). Child-reported models revealed significant homotypic continuity for mood (OR = 8.8) and anxiety disorder (OR = 6.0), and heterotypic continuity between anxiety and mood disorders (OR = 12.4).

Mental comorbidity was prevalent and persistent in children with CPI with homotypic and heterotypic continuity common across informants. Child disability and parent psychopathology may be priority targets within integrated family-centered models of care to prevent mental comorbidity in children with CPI. Given that demographic, clinical, and parent factors condition risk for physical-mental comorbidity in childhood, integrated models of care that are family-entered should be adopted broadly in pediatric settings to promote positive mental health in children with CPI.