Introduction Although several systematic reviews (SRs)/meta-analyses (MAs) on the association between specific mental disorders and specific somatic conditions are available, an overarching evidence synthesis across mental disorders and somatic conditions is currently lacking. We will conduct an umbrella review of SRs/MAs to test: 1) the strength of the association between individual mental disorders and individual somatic conditions in children/adolescents and adults; 2) to which extent associations are specific to individual mental and somatic conditions .
Methods and analysis We will search a broad set of electronic databases and contact study authors. We will include SRs with MA or SRs reporting the effect size from individual studies on the association between a number of somatic and mental conditions (as per the International Classification of Diseases, 11th Revision). We will follow an algorithm to select only one SR or MA when more than one are available on the same association. We will rate the quality of included SRs/MAs using the AMSTAR-2 tool. We will assess to which extent mental disorders are selectively associated with specific somatic conditions or if there are transdiagnostic, across-spectra or diagnostic spectrum-specific associations between mental disorders and somatic conditions based on the Transparent, Reporting, Appraising, Numerating, Showing (TRANSD) recommendations.
Discussion The present umbrella review will shed light on the association between mental health disorders and somatic conditions, providing useful data for the care of patients with mental health disorders, in particular for early detection and intervention. This work might also add insight to the pathophysiology of mental health conditions, and contribute to the current debate on the value of a transdiagnostic approach in psychiatry.