Sunday, May 15, 2011

Is Academic Psychiatry Out of Touch with Reality?

John McManamy and I may be of different political persuasions, but are fighting on the same side in the never-ending struggle against our common enemy, mental illness.

In his "Knowledge Is Necessity" blog, he raises this intriguing point:

"A lot of what passes for academic psychiatry these days is performed by researchers who don’t even see patients. This explains why the DSM symptom lists are so spectacularly out of touch with clinical reality...."

1. McManamy has acquired an awesome level of knowledge as an informed layman, to where he can impress psychologists and psychiatrists at their professional conferences.
2. Rare is the psychiatrist who does therapy anymore, and this disconnect is as catastrophic as separating the mind from the body instead of treating both as an inseparable unit.
3. Divorcing research from clinical observation makes it infinitely harder for science to come up with answers, or to even ask the right questions.

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