Mental Health

Diseases of the soul are more dangerous and more numerous than those of the body - Cicero

Mental Health

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Mental Illness in a Test Tube

The lack of objective medical tests in psychiatry is a common criticism of the field. According to some, being a doctor means using physical exams, lab work or imaging to evaluate patients. Indeed, oncologists can find a tumor on a CT scan. Cardiologists can diagnose a heart attack with blood tests or an electrocardiogram.

Despite public misconceptions, psychiatrists do much of the same. We use objective tests all the time to evaluate patients with mental illness. (And I don't mean inkblots.)

Say a middle-aged man visits a doctor's office because he's been experiencing confusion and memory problems. His family says his speech sounds different. The man has become delusional…

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Last Updated : Thursday, May 26, 2022