Factors associated with psychosis among patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome: a case-control study

Clin Infect Dis. 2004 Oct 15;39(8):1247-9. doi: 10.1086/424016. Epub 2004 Sep 24.


We observed that a number of patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) developed affective psychosis during the acute phase of their illness. We reviewed all SARS-related psychiatric consultations in Hong Kong and investigated the risk factors for psychosis among patients with SARS in a matched case-control study. Patients with SARS-related psychosis received higher total doses of steroids and had higher rates of family history of psychiatric illness. The findings of the present study suggest that steroid toxicity, personal vulnerability, and, probably, psychosocial stressors jointly contributed to the development of psychosis in patients with SARS.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / adverse effects
  • Adult
  • Affective Disorders, Psychotic / etiology*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Psychology
  • Risk Factors
  • Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome / complications*


  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones