UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry

Publication Date


Document Type



Bipolar Disorder; Children; Mood Disorders; Stress Disorders, Traumatic





  • Mood dysregulation in traumatized children often is misdiagnosed as Bipolar Disorder (BD) and conversely the diagnosis of BD is often overlooked.
  • This presents a diagnostic quagmire that is critical to understand in more depth and to date has received little attention in the literature.
  • We aim to characterize the relationship between childhood trauma and mood dysregulation and between childhood trauma and pediatric BD by describing clinical correlates of children with trauma and comorbid mood disorders in a community mental health setting.
  • 40 youth between the ages of 8-18 years, who present to child psychiatry at Community Healthlink clinics with symptoms of mood dysregulation and history of trauma will be assessed.
  • Children will be divided into two groups: (1) Mood Disorder NOS (MD NOS) (n=20); and (2) Unmodified DSM-IV-TR BD (n=20)
  • At the end of 6 months, youth with MD NOS will be re-evaluated to determine if progressed to the diagnosis of BD
Future Directions
  • Better understanding the association between trauma and development of mood disorders will increase our knowledge of the diverse effects of such events on youths’ emotional and behavioral development
  • Identifying clinical correlates that help predict later development of BD in mood dsyregulated, traumatized youth, will promote future research aimed at identifying biological markers and preventive treatment interventions
Presented at the UMass Department of Psychiatry Research Day, October 2010.


Dvir Y, Hill M, Frazier JA. Mood Disorders and Trauma – What are the Associations? Future Directions, UMASS Department of Psychiatry Research Day, October 2010

Journal/Book/Conference Title

2010 UMASS Department of Psychiatry Research Day

Included in

Psychiatry Commons