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October/November 2010 (vol. 07/3)
Many people on long-term sickness absence are suffering from undiagnosed co-morbid illnesses. Patients absent from work for more than one year (n = 635) were referred for multidisciplinary assessment (MAS) by specialists in psychiatry, orthopaedic medicine and rehabilitation medicine. At referral, most patients had one or two diagnosed conditions (ICD-10) – after MAS, most had two or three. At referral, 45% of male and 47% of female patients had only somatic diagnoses; after MAS, only 20% and 29%, respectively, had somatic diagnoses only. Diagnoses of somatic–psychiatric co-morbidity increased from 31% to 55%.
Occupational Health at Work October/November 2010 (vol. 07/3) pp40