Psychopathology And Diagnostic Reasoning

In many realms of medicine, objective diagnoses can be made: A clavicula is broken.  An infection is present. TSH levels meet the diagnostic criteria for hypothyroidism. Psychiatry, on the other hand, deals with psychological phenomena and behaviors. Can these, too, be “defined objectively and by scientific criteria (Gergen, 1985), or are they social constructions?” (Sadock et al., 2015).

Thanks to myriad advances during recent decades, we know that psychopathology is caused by many interacting factors. Theoretical and clinical contributions to the field have come from the neural sciences, genetics, psychology, and social-cultural sciences. How do these factors impact the expression, classification, diagnosis, and prevalence of psychopathology, and why might it be important for a nurse practitioner to take a multidimensional, integrative approach?

To Prepare:

  • Review this week’s Learning Resources, considering the many interacting factors that contribute to the development of psychopathology.
  • Consider how theoretical perspective on psychopathology impacts the work of the PMHNP.
By Day 3 of Week 1

Explain the biological (genetic and neuroscientific); psychological (behavioral and cognitive processes, emotional, developmental); and social, cultural, and interpersonal factors that influence the development of psychopathology.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses

By Day 6 of Week 1

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on 2 different days by explaining the implications of why, as an advanced practice nurse, it is important to adopt a multidimensional, integrative model of psychopathology.

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Alex Otieno

Author Since: January 17, 2021

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