Week 3 Assgn

·       Review this week’s Learning Resources. Consider the insights they provide about assessing and diagnosing mood disorders.

·       Download the Comprehensive Psychiatric Evaluation Template, which you will use to complete this Assignment. Also review the Comprehensive Psychiatric Evaluation Exemplar to see an example of a completed evaluation document.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)

·       By Day 1 of this week, select a specific video case study to use for this Assignment from the Video Case Selections choices in the Learning Resources. View your assigned video case and review the additional data for the case in the “Case History Reports” document, keeping the requirements of the evaluation template in mind.

·       Consider what history would be necessary to collect from this patient.

·       Consider what interview questions you would need to ask this patient.

·       Identify at least three possible differential diagnoses for the patient.

Complete and submit your Comprehensive Psychiatric Evaluation, including your differential diagnosis and critical-thinking process to formulate a primary diagnosis. Incorporate the following into your responses in the template:

·       Subjective: What details did the patient provide regarding their chief complaint and symptomology to derive your differential diagnosis? What is the duration and severity of their symptoms? How are their symptoms impacting their functioning in life?

·       Objective: What observations did you make during the psychiatric assessment?

·       Assessment: Discuss the patient’s mental status examination results. What were your differential diagnoses? Provide a minimum of three possible diagnoses with supporting evidence, listed in order from highest priority to lowest priority. Compare the DSM-5-TR diagnostic criteria for each differential diagnosis and explain what DSM-5 criteria rules out the differential diagnosis to find an accurate diagnosis. Explain the critical-thinking process that led you to the primary diagnosis you selected. Include pertinent positives and pertinent negatives for the specific patient case.

·       Reflection notes: What would you do differently with this client if you could conduct the session over? Also include in your reflection a discussion related to legal/ethical considerations (demonstrate critical thinking beyond confidentiality and consent for treatment!), health promotion and disease prevention taking into consideration patient factors (such as age, ethnic group, etc.), PMH, and other risk factors (e.g., socioeconomic, cultural background, etc.).

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I have provided the link to the video in the Wk 3 doc. I have also copied the transcript if you are unable to open the link.

Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay

Psychiatric Evaluation: Unraveling the Complexities of Mental Health


The field of psychiatry plays a pivotal role in understanding, diagnosing, and treating mental health disorders, encompassing a wide range of conditions that affect the human mind. A comprehensive psychiatric evaluation is a crucial first step in providing appropriate care to individuals experiencing emotional and cognitive distress. This essay explores the essential components of a psychiatric evaluation, the differential diagnosis process, and the critical thinking involved in formulating a primary diagnosis.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)

I. Components of a Psychiatric Evaluation:

  1. Clinical History: A comprehensive clinical history involves gathering information about the patient’s presenting complaints, medical history, family history of mental health disorders, social context, and any recent life events that might have triggered the onset of symptoms.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)
  2. Mental Status Examination (MSE): The MSE assesses the patient’s current mental state, including appearance, behavior, mood, affect, thought processes, thought content, perception, cognition, insight, and judgment. It helps the clinician understand the patient’s overall cognitive and emotional functioning.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)
  3. Structured Interviews: Various standardized interviews, such as the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI) or the Diagnostic Interview for Genetic Studies (DIGS), are used to obtain specific information and screen for psychiatric disorders.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)
  4. Psychological Testing: Psychometric assessments, such as personality tests, intelligence tests, and symptom-specific scales, may be administered to further understand the patient’s psychological profile.
  5. Collateral Information: Information from family members, close friends, or other relevant sources can provide valuable insights into the patient’s functioning and behavior.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)
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II. Differential Diagnosis:

Differential diagnosis is a systematic process in which the clinician considers various possible conditions that could explain the patient’s symptoms. It involves ruling out other potential causes and narrowing down the list of plausible diagnoses. A comprehensive differential diagnosis is essential to ensure accurate treatment and care.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)

  1. Gathering Data: The first step in the differential diagnosis process is to gather all available information about the patient, including the clinical history, MSE findings, psychological test results, and collateral information.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)
  2. Identifying Potential Diagnoses: Based on the gathered data, the clinician generates a list of potential diagnoses that could explain the patient’s symptoms and presentation.
  3. Analyzing Symptomatology: The clinician carefully analyzes the specific symptoms exhibited by the patient and matches them to the diagnostic criteria outlined in the DSM-5 or ICD-10, depending on the region.
  4. Ruling Out Exclusions: The clinician must rule out any medical or substance-related causes for the symptoms before considering psychiatric diagnoses.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)
  5. Comparing and Contrasting: The clinician compares and contrasts the symptom profile of the patient with the diagnostic criteria of different mental health disorders to determine the most likely diagnosis.

III. Critical-Thinking Process in Formulating a Primary Diagnosis:

  1. Holistic Approach: A critical-thinking approach to psychiatric diagnosis involves considering the patient as a whole, recognizing the interconnectedness of biological, psychological, and social factors that influence mental health.
  2. Cultural Competence: The clinician must be culturally competent and aware of the impact of cultural beliefs and practices on the expression and interpretation of mental health symptoms.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)
  3. Differential Weighting: Each potential diagnosis is weighed based on the severity and frequency of symptoms, the patient’s history, and the presence of risk factors.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)
  4. Rule of Parsimony: In accordance with Occam’s razor, the clinician should favor simpler explanations over complex ones when formulating the primary diagnosis.
  5. Flexibility: The diagnostic process requires flexibility, as some symptoms may overlap across different disorders, and comorbidity is not uncommon.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)

Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay


The psychiatric evaluation is a foundational aspect of mental health care, guiding clinicians in unraveling the complexities of the human mind. The differential diagnosis process and critical-thinking approach help formulate a primary diagnosis that paves the way for appropriate treatment and support for individuals grappling with mental health challenges. By continuously refining and updating our understanding of psychiatric evaluation, we can better serve those in need and promote mental well-being within society.(Psychiatric Evaluation sample essay)



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