Posted by JonW on August 26, 2003, at 15:35:44
In reply to A poll for everyone... out of curiosity., posted by Ame Sans Vie on August 26, 2003, at 9:51:45
> I'm just curious to know what all of your opinions are about one particular thing. Which do you believe is more important in treating psychiatric patients -- accurate diagnoses (labels) or individual symptoms? I'll post my opinions concerning this after I absorb some of y'all's (oh boy... 8 years and TX and now the dialect is creeping up on me, lol) wisdom and insight. Oh, and of course "both" is an acceptable answer. :-)
That's a tough one...
I would say, so long as the cause can in fact be identified, then it's important to seek the root of the problem. However, there is a lot to be said for reducing symptoms. People in pain should never be deprived of the ability to ease their pain. I think the best answer to this question would vary depending on the situation. In general, I think if it's possible to make the distinction between cause and symptom, then the cause should be treated first. Do we really know enough, though, to be saying what causes what? I don't know, and that will be my final point -- I don't know enough to have an opinion on this issue. Apparently, that didn't stop me from posting :)
On a side note, I do think it's dangerous to define any set of symptoms that a drug reduces as a bona fide disorder. This is good for the drug companies, but it may be at the expense of treatment-resistant outpatients.