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Prior studies have indicated that both high and low school achievement are associated with development of bipolar disorder (BD). We believe that the latter association may be due to the confounding effect of family history of mental disorder.
To further investigate the association between school achievement and subsequent development of BD by adding adjustment for family history of mental disorder.
We are conducting a historical prospective cohort study based on data from nationwide Danish registers. The cohort consists of all individuals born in Denmark 1986–97 of Danish-born parents, who were alive and living in Denmark at age 16 years, and who have completed final examinations in 9th grade between 2002 and 2014 (n = 578,247). The cohort members will be followed until death, emigration, development of bipolar disorder, or end of study, whichever comes first. Hazard rate ratios for bipolar disorder will be calculated in a Cox model using the z-score for examination grades as unit of exposure. The regression analyses will be adjusted for a series of potential confounders including family history of mental disorder.
We expect to find a positive association between high school achievement and development of BD. In contrast, we expect to demonstrate that the association between low school achievement and BD detected in prior studies is due to confounding by family history of mental disorder. The results will be shown at the conference.
By further testing the potential link between eminence and BD, we hope to contribute to a more balanced perception of BD.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
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