Hostname: page-component-5d59c44645-kw98b Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-03-03T13:37:35.145Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

Parental separation, loss and psychosis in different ethnic groups: a case-control study

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  21 November 2006

CRAIG MORGAN
Affiliation:
Division of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK
JAMES KIRKBRIDE
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
JULIAN LEFF
Affiliation:
Division of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK
TOM CRAIG
Affiliation:
Division of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK
GERARD HUTCHINSON
Affiliation:
Psychiatry Unit, University of the West Indies, Trinidad
KWAME McKENZIE
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Sciences, Royal Free and University College Medical School, London, UK
KEVIN MORGAN
Affiliation:
Division of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK
PAOLA DAZZAN
Affiliation:
Division of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK
GILLIAN A. DOODY
Affiliation:
Division of Psychiatry, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK
PETER JONES
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
ROBIN MURRAY
Affiliation:
Division of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK
PAUL FEARON
Affiliation:
Division of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK

Abstract

Background. Numerous studies have reported high rates of psychosis in the Black Caribbean and Black African populations in the UK. However, few studies have investigated the role of specific risk factors in different ethnic groups. We sought to investigate the relationship between long-term separation from, and death of, a parent before the age of 16 and risk of adult psychosis in different ethnic groups.

Method. All patients with a first episode of psychosis who made contact with psychiatric services in defined catchment areas in London and Nottingham, UK and a series of community controls were included in the AESOP (Aetiology and Ethnicity in Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses) study. Data relating to clinical and social variables, including parental separation and loss, were collected from patients and controls.

Results. Separation from, and death of, a parent before the age of 16 were both strongly associated with a two- to threefold increased risk of psychosis. The strength of these associations were similar for White British and Black Caribbean (but not Black African) subjects. Separation from (but not death of) a parent was more common among Black Caribbean controls than White British controls.

Conclusions. Early separation may have a greater impact in the Black Caribbean population, because it is more common, and may contribute to the excess of psychosis in this population.

Type
Original Article
Copyright
2007 Cambridge University Press

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)