Aarhus Universitets segl

Maja O'Connor

Comparison of proposed diagnostic criteria for pathological grief using a sample of elderly bereaved spouses in Denmark: Perspectives on future bereavement research

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskrift/Konferencebidrag i tidsskrift /Bidrag til avisTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review


Background: A distinct grief-specific disorder is included in the ICD-11. Lack of clarity remains regarding whether different proposed diagnostic criteria capture similar or different diagnostic entities. Our aim was to examine the specificity of four proposed diagnostic criteria-sets for pathological grief in a population-based sample. Methods: Participants were 206 conjugally bereaved elderly Danes (59% female; mean age = 72.5 years, SD = 4.2; range 65–81) who completed self-report questionnaires six months post-loss. The main measure was the Danish version of Inventory of Complicated Grief-Revised. Results: Results indicate substantial agreement between Prolonged Grief Disorder (PGD), Persistent Complex Bereavement Disorder (PCBD) and ICD-11-PGD (kappa's = 0.69–0.84), which found 6–9% of cases tested positive for pathological grief. Complicated Grief (CG) was partly in agreement with the three other symptom-diagnostic tests (kappa's = 0.13–0.20), and the prevalence-rate of pathological grief was 48%. Limitations: The low response-rate of 39%. The selective inclusion of data ≥6 months post-loss prevents a comparison of acute and prolonged grief reactions. Using self-reported data, not diagnostic interviews, challenges the validity of our findings. Using a sample of elderly people may limit the generalizability of our results to other age groups. Conclusion: We suggest that PGD, PCBD and ICD-11-PGD may be more discriminative in identifying a specific grief-related psychopathology, while CG may identify a broader set of grief reactions.

TidsskriftJournal of Affective Disorders
Sider (fra-til)52-59
Antal sider8
StatusUdgivet - maj 2019

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