Monday, July 8, 2013

DSM-IV Problems

The DSM-IV is an important tool for clinicians. It provides a standard for diagnoses to be standardized across psychology; however, the DSM-IV is not as precise for diagnosing personality disorders as some psychologists would like.

Give an example of each of the following problems identified in your readings and explain how these problems could negatively affect a diagnosis.

1.                  Some criteria used for reaching a diagnosis cannot be observed directly.
Clinicians using the DSM-IV alone cannot gather subjective information from patients, which is need for proper diagnoses. There needs to be a patient analysis in order to collect the specific information needed for one’s proper diagnoses. A patient in a social setting may react differently in a one on one clinical setting. Therefore, one who suffers from an antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) may not display antisocial symptoms in a one on one clinical setting.
2.                  Personality disorders can be similar to each other.
Personality disorders, such as bi-polar disorder and depression are very similar to each other; therefore, they have similar symptoms and they can be mistaken as the other. If one is misdiagnosed as suffering from one, but really suffers from the other then one will not be properly treated and could suffer from further problems and complications because of misdiagnoses and mistreatment.  
3.                  People with different personalities can be given the same diagnosis
One with a schizoid personality disorder may be given the same diagnosis as one with paranoid personality disorder, because both fall under “Cluster A” personality disorders. This cluster of personality disorders are characterized by one having odd and eccentric behaviors, thoughts or thinking.
4.                  Do you think that personality disorders are true mental illnesses? Why or why not?
I think that personality disorders can be true mental illnesses. Personality disorders and mental illnesses have no fundamental differences. In the DSM-IV, personality disorders are classified as mental disorders. Antisocial personality disorder can be considered a mental illness. 

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