Review of the clinical approach to the treatment of disruptive mood dysregulation disorder

Brian Hendrickson, Mahlet Girma, Leslie Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Though a decade of research led to the creation of disruptive mood dysregulation disorder (DMDD), it was not until the 2013 publication of the DSM-5 that DMDD became an official diagnosis. The conception of DMDD was largely due to increasing rates of paediatric bipolar disorder (PBD) diagnoses, which significantly impacted treatment for these youth. The core symptoms of DMDD include persistent irritability and recurrent outbursts; the absence of a previous diagnostic category for youth experiencing these symptoms may have led to the over diagnosis of PBD. Due to the chronicity of symptoms, these youth are impaired in multiple areas of functioning. This article will present background information about DMDD, discuss clinical assessment strategies including scales for measuring irritability and aggression, and review pharmacologic and psychosocial treatments for youth with DMDD and clinical phenotypes similar to DMDD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)202-211
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Review of Psychiatry
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 2 2020


  • Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder
  • assessment
  • child and adolescent mental health
  • mood disorder
  • pharmacologic treatment
  • psychosocial treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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