Psychiatric characteristics in transsexual individuals: multicentre study in four European countries

Gunter Heylens, Els Elaut, Baudewijntje P.C. Kreukels, Muirne Paap, Susanne Cerwenka, Hertha Richter-Appelt, Peggy Cohen-Kettenis, Ira R. Haraldsen, Griet De Cuypere

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

142 Citations (Scopus)


Background Research into the relationship between gender identity disorder and psychiatric problems has shown contradictory results. Aims To investigate psychiatric problems in adults fulfilling DSM-IV-TR criteria for a diagnosis of gender identity disorder. Method Data were collected within the European Network for the Investigation of Gender Incongruence using the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview - Plus and the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis II Disorders (n = 305). Results In 38% of the individuals with gender identity disorder a current DSM-IV-TR Axis I diagnosis was found, mainly affective disorders and anxiety disorders. Furthermore, almost 70% had a current and lifetime diagnosis. All four countries showed a similar prevalence, except for affective and anxiety disorders, and no difference was found between individuals with early-onset and late-onset disorder. An Axis II diagnosis was found in 15% of all individuals with gender identity disorder, which is comparable to the general population. Conclusions People with gender identity disorder show more psychiatric problems than the general population; mostly affective and anxiety problems are found
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)151-156
JournalBritish journal of psychiatry
Publication statusPublished - 9 May 2014


  • METIS-302182
  • IR-89264


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