Depersonalization Disorder: Lost Inside The Self Issue 1, May, 2014 - Page 15

Several studies meet on a conservative estimate for DPD to be around 1-2% of the population. Although they has not been a conclusive study, this estimate has been found through studied carried out by Colin Ross, an expert in dissociative disorders. He conducted a questionnaire in the late 1980’s, questioning 1000 randomly selected residents of Winnipeg, Canada. With his findings he estimated a 2.4% prevalence of current DPD amongst the residents.

If the estimate of 2.4% was found to be accurate of the population, this figure would be more than double of the people with Schizophrenia and close to equal to the figures of Bipolar disorder and OCD. However DPD is not as widely known as these other conditions, which are granted considerably more attention and research funding.

These findings allowed other authors and researchers to conclude that depersonalization is common, it does not currently have a cure and can not be reduced to a negligible variant of depression and anxiety and that more awareness about depersonalization with respect to detection and research is urgently required.

Although findings conclude depersonalization is common the Office of Rare Diseases of the National Institute of Health (NIH) currently lists it as a ‘rare disease’.

Due to the limited research, and the placement of DPD within the NIH many sufferers are misdiagnosed. The research is required to prevent the disorder and to provide relief to those suffering in silent, without a correct diagnoses.

When asked about the limited information on DPD 35 randomly surveyed DPD sufferers, responded with a greater amount agreeing to the limited information that is accessible. Many sufferers have not been given a name for what they are expereincing for many years due to this limitation.

Depersonalization listed as rare disease by National Institute of Health

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At the moment they are currently two research units, which specialise in researching and treating DP/DR. These are The Institute of Psychiatry at London Kings College and Dissociation Research Program at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York.

S.Khan