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Diagnostic criteria of English, French, and German psychiatrists

  • R. E. Kendell (a1), Pierre Pichot (a1) and M. von Cranach (a1)

Videotape recordings were made of brief diagnostic interviews with 27 patients newly admitted to a psychiatric hospital in London and then shown to groups of English-speaking psychiatrists in London, Paris, and Munich. Comparison of the diagnoses made by these three audiences suggests that English, French, and German psychiatrists have similar concepts of schizophrenia, neurotic illness, personality disorder, and alcholism, but differ markedly in their concept of affective illness, particularly manic-depressive illness. English psychiatrists have much broader concepts of both neurotic and psychotic depression and of mania than the French, with German psychiatrists in an intermediate position. Important differences in the use of other technical terms like agitation, perplexity, and thought disorder also emerged. The ratings of the English and German audiences were closer to one another than either was to the French.

Corresponding author
1Address for correspondence: Professor R. E. Kendell, University Department of Psychiatry, Royal Edinburgh Hospital, Morningside Park, Edinburgh EH10 5HF.
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Psychological Medicine
  • ISSN: 0033-2917
  • EISSN: 1469-8978
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