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February 1987

Psychiatric Consultation to Inpatients With 'Early-Onset' Type I Diabetes Mellitus in a University Hospital

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Psychiatry (Dr Popkin and Mr Callies) and Medicine (Dr Popkin), University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1987;44(2):169-171. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1987.01800140081012

• With the use of medical records and the Consultation Liaison Outcome Evaluation System, we studied psychiatric consultation to 52 hospitalized patients with type I diabetes mellitus having onset of disease by age 25 years. The distribution of psychiatric diagnoses assigned to this sample of patients with "early-onset" diabetes did not differ from those of patients with other medical and surgical illnesses. Three features did distinguish consultation to patients having type I diabetes: (1) the diabetics were referred unusually early in the hospital course; (2) psychotropics were seldom utilized; and (3) consultants' recommendations for diagnostic studies were not followed in more than 90% of cases. The study indicates that the primary medical diagnosis is a critical variable governing consultees' use of and responses to psychiatric consultation.