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Article   |    
Diagnosis and Treatment of Psychiatric Disorders in Medically Ill Inpatients
George Fulop; James J. Strain
Psychiatric Services 1991; doi:
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Divison of behavioral medicine and consultation paychiatry at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, 1 Gustave Levy Place, New York, New York 10029

© 1991 by the American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

Medical and surgical in patients with coexisting psychiatric disorderspose several challenges to the consulting mental health professional in the general hospital. A major challenge is determining whether presenting signs and symptoms have a medical or psychiatric basis. Making such a determination requires a careful history, a mental status examination, and the utilization of bedside screening and diagnostic instruments. Recommended treatments include psychotherapy, psychoeducation and pharmacotherapy. However, psychotropic drugs must be used with caution because of potential interactions with drugs prescribed for medical conditions. Studies indicate that timely psychosocial interventions can improve the medical patient's mental health and have the potential to reduce length of hospital stay and utilization of health services.

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