[School Absenteeism as a Signal for Psychological Problems]

Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd. 2014;158:A7269.
[Article in Dutch]


Case description: We present two patients with frequent school absences. Patient A is a 12-year-old boy, diagnosed with developmental coordination disorder. When his mother visits the youth community health doctor, he shows signs of an anxiety disorder with stress-related physical symptoms. Patient B is a 15-year-old boy whose teacher suspects a gaming and internet addiction. After consulting the youth community health doctor, he is referred to a psychologist for further diagnosis of a social anxiety disorder.

Conclusion: Frequent school absenteeism is associated with psychological problems. After excluding physical causes referral for further psychiatric assessment is recommended. As the medical advisor of the school, the youth community health doctor can play a role in this process.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Absenteeism*
  • Adolescent
  • Anxiety Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Referral and Consultation
  • Schools / statistics & numerical data
  • Students / psychology*
  • Students / statistics & numerical data