Issues of classification and diagnosis of phobias

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  • Issues Surrounding Classification + Diagnosis of Phobias
    • two classification systems
      • DSM-IV
        • official classification system used worldwide.
        • assesses patients on   the biological, psychological + social aspects of their condition.
          • leads to a more informed decision by clinician
      • ICD-10
        • for  physical AND mental conditions
        • primarily descriptive document, used for classification and research, but not diagnosis
    • reliability
      • "each time a classification system is used, to diagnose a particular cluster of symptoms and behaviour, it should produce the same outcome"
      • two different kinds
        • test/retest
          • when one practitioner makes the same diagnosis on separate occasions from the same information.
        • inter-rater
          • when several practitioners make the same diagnosis of the same patient
    • validity
      • co-morbidity
        • "the extent to which two or more conditions co-occur" e.g. phobias and depression
        • if they do tend to co-occur, this suggests they are not separate entities
          • therefore making it hard to diagnose a treatment
      • concurrent validity
        • comparing one method of diagnosis to another
      • culture and gender bias
        • when the clinician has an unintentional tendency to certain kinds of diagnosis


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