Dissociation : Vol. 4, No. 3, p. 152-164 : Children coping with trauma: diagnosis of "Dissociation Identity Disorder"
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Dissociation is a common phenomenon in children. Under conditions of extreme stress, dissociation may be used to wall off traumatic memories. In extreme cases, the use of dissociation may result in the development of multiple personality disorder (MPD). In this paper, the literature of child MPD cases is summarized. Issues addressed include: developmental aspects of dissociation, child abuse leading to dissociation and multiple personality disorder, gender specific response to trauma, epidemiology, familial factors, checklists for childhood dissociation, and diagnostic criteria for a proposed diagnostic category called "Dissociation Identity Disorder " for the diagnosis of evolving children and adolescent MPD.