Article: We Must Set A High Bar For Attributing Psychopathology To Sexual And Gender Minority People

A commentary published July 18, 2022 in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry cautions clinicians, scientists, and researchers against making assumptions that sexually and gender diverse people have a greater predisposition to psychiatric illness. The commentary was written in response to a newly published study by Oka et al showing that there were no differences in clinical responsiveness to electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) for treatment-resistant psychiatric illness between LGBTQ and non-LGBTQ patients. The authors of the study had hypothesized that LGBTQ patients would be less favorable to ECT because they would be more likely to have clinical conditions less favorable to ECT, such as posttraumatic stress disorder, personality disorders, or substance use disorders.

In “Psychiatric Care Considerations for Sexually and Gender Diverse Populations,” commentary author Dr. Alex S. Keuroghlian, who directs the National LGBTQIA+ Health Education Center at The Fenway Institute and the Massachusetts General Hospital Psychiatry Gender Identity Program, observed that the premise of the study was flawed.

“Psychiatric Care Considerations for Sexually and Gender Diverse Populations,” is available online here.