European Child & Adolescent Psychiatry

, Volume 17, Issue 3, pp 153–161 | Cite as

Prepubertal mania: diagnostic differences between US and UK clinicians

  • Bernadka DubickaEmail author
  • Gabrielle A. Carlson
  • Andy Vail
  • Richard Harrington



To test the hypothesis that US clinicians diagnose prepubertal mania more commonly than UK clinicians.


Five vignettes were presented to 73 UK clinicians and 85 US clinicians. Four cases represented complex scenarios where the diagnosis of mania was thought to be controversial, and one case was a ‘classical’ case of mania in an older child where it was thought there would be good agreement. Clinicians were asked to determine symptoms of mania, and their preferred diagnoses.


As predicted, overall there were significantly more diagnoses of mania in the US than the UK (P ≤ 0.0001). US clinicians were significantly more likely to diagnose mania in three of the four complex cases, and there was good agreement in the case of classical mania. In addition, UK clinicians were significantly more likely to diagnose pervasive developmental disorders and adjustment disorders, whereas obsessive compulsive disorder was more commonly diagnosed in the US.


There may be differences in how clinicians in the US and UK interpret mania-like symptoms in younger children, which may have implications for diagnosis and management.


mania prepubertal diagnosis 



This work was supported by a grant from the Central Manchester and Manchester Children’s University Hospitals National Health Service Trust, UK.

Supplementary material

787_2007_649_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (79 kb)
ESM 1 (PDF 80 kb)


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Copyright information

© Steinkopff Verlag Darmstadt 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bernadka Dubicka
    • 1
    Email author
  • Gabrielle A. Carlson
    • 2
  • Andy Vail
    • 3
  • Richard Harrington
    • 4
  1. 1.University of Manchester and The Junction, Adolescent UnitLancasterUK
  2. 2.Dept. of Psychiatry and Behavioural ScienceStony Brook University School of MedicineStony BrookUSA
  3. 3.Biostatistics GroupUniversity of ManchesterManchesterUK
  4. 4.University of Manchester, Royal Manchester Children’s HospitalManchesterUK

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