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In Journal of affective disorders ; h5-index 79.0

BACKGROUND : Childhood trauma is associated with psychosis in adults with bipolar disorder (BD). Although bullying represents a widespread form of childhood trauma, no studies thus far have investigated the association of bullying and psychosis in pediatric bipolar disorder (PBD). We aim to examine the association between psychosis in PBD with bullying victimization.

METHODS : We included 64 children and adolescents (age± mean= 12±3.43) outpatients with BD spectrum disorders. Psychiatric diagnoses were assessed with the semi- structured interview Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia for School Age Children-Present and Lifetime (KSADS-PL) version with additional depression and manic symptom items derived from the Washington University in St. Louis Kiddie Schedule for Affective Disorders (WASH-U-KSADS). Bullying, demographic, and clinical variables were assessed during the clinical interview.

RESULTS : A lifetime history of psychotic symptoms was associated with bullying (p = 0.002), suicidal behavior (p = 0.006), low socioeconomic status (p = 0.04), and severity of PBD (p = 0.02). Only bullying (OR = 7.3; 95%CI = 2-32) and suicidal behavior (OR = 7.6; 95%CI = 1.5-47.8) remained significant after adjustment for confounders. In a supplementary analysis, we developed a model using supervised machine learning to identify the most relevant variables that differentiated participants with psychotic symptoms, which included bullying, Clinical Global Impression-Severity scale (CGI-S), and suicidal behavior (accuracy = 75%, [p = 0.03]; sensitivity = 77.91%; specificity = 69.05%; area under the curve [AUC] = 0.86).

LIMITATIONS : Small sample, cross-sectional design, and generalizability of findings beyond the outpatient clinical sample.

CONCLUSIONS : Findings underscore the importance of assessing bullying in PBD participants. Future longitudinal studies with larger samples are needed to replicate our findings and determine causality.

Acosta Jandira Rahmeier, Librenza-Garcia Diego, Watts Devon, Francisco Ana Paula, Zórtea Franco, Raffa Bruno, Kohmann André, Mugnol Fabiana Eloisa, Motta Gledis Lisiane, Tramontina Silzá, Passos Ives Cavalcante