Document Detail

A systematic investigation of 16 cases of neonaticide.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11329409     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
OBJECTIVE: Neonaticide, or infant murder on the day of birth, is often preceded by denial of pregnancy. The preponderance of case reports of neonaticide describes a pattern of pregnancy denial, dissociation, and ego disorganization. The author systematically investigated the clinical characteristics of 16 women charged with homicide in the United States after alleged neonaticides. METHOD: The women received a psychiatric evaluation and were administered the Dissociative Experiences SCALE: RESULTS: Nearly all of the women reported similar precipitants and symptoms, including depersonalization, dissociative hallucinations, and intermittent amnesia at delivery. CONCLUSIONS: The characteristics of the women in the study were similar to those reported in the literature on neonaticide. The existence of this common pattern suggests that treatment strategies can be designed for women at risk for neonaticide.
M G Spinelli
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The American journal of psychiatry     Volume:  158     ISSN:  0002-953X     ISO Abbreviation:  Am J Psychiatry     Publication Date:  2001 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2001-05-01     Completed Date:  2001-05-24     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0370512     Medline TA:  Am J Psychiatry     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  811-3     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, 10032, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Amnesia / diagnosis,  epidemiology,  psychology
Denial (Psychology)
Depersonalization / diagnosis*,  epidemiology
Dissociative Disorders / diagnosis*,  epidemiology
Forensic Psychiatry / statistics & numerical data
Hallucinations / diagnosis,  epidemiology
Infant, Newborn
Infanticide / legislation & jurisprudence,  prevention & control,  psychology*
Mental Competency / statistics & numerical data*
United States
Grant Support
Comment In:
Am J Psychiatry. 2002 Mar;159(3):498-9   [PMID:  11870035 ]

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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