Original Articles

Prevalence and characteristics of impulse control disorders in a group of medical students


Department of Psychiatry, Cukurova University School of Medicine, Adana, Turkey

Alpha Psychiatry 2017; 18: 113-120
DOI: 10.5455/apd.233990
Read: 439 Downloads: 248 Published: 01 April 2017

Objective: To determine the prevalence of impulse control disorders (ICDs) among medical students and evaluate the related socio-demographic and clinical features. Methods: A total of 277 students in the fourth and fifth year of medical school were included in the study. The study was conducted between September 2011 and June 2012 in Cukurova University Medical School, Adana, Turkey. A demographic data form has been completed. The Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID-I) was used to determine axis I psychiatric disorders. The prevalence rates of ICDs were investigated by using the modified version of the Minnesota Impulse Disorders Interview. All patients completed Barratt Impulsiveness Scale Version 11 (BIS-11) and Symptom Check List-90. Results: The lifetime prevalence of at least one ICD in our sample was 11.2% (n=31). When the participants with the diagnosis of ICDs not otherwise specified were excluded the prevalence rate decreased to 7.9%. The most common ICD was intermittent explosive disorder (6.1%), followed by trichotillomania (2.5%). History of suicide attempts was significantly higher in the group with ICD. There was statistically significant difference between comorbidity of other Axis I psychiatric disorders and a significant difference was observed in terms of total impulsivity, non-planning activity, and motor impulsivity scores as determined by BIS-11 between groups with or without ICDs. Conclusion: ICDs might be underdiagnosed in young adult populations. ICDs affect the quality of life, the course and outcome of comorbid disorders so it is important to ask for these disorders in regular psychiatric interviews and treating them in an appropriate and specific way. [Anadolu Psikiyatri Derg 2017; 18(2.000): 113-120]

EISSN 2757-8038