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Clinical Case Formulation: Varieties of Approaches

12th October 2009

Case formulation is a key clinical skill for mental health practitioners, and many clinicians use it on a regular basis. It summarizes the essential features of a case and allows practitioners to derive an individually–based treatment– a treatment which is more accurate than one based on diagnosis alone. However, despite the centrality of this approach to diagnosis in mental health, students and practitioners often lack appropriate models.

Clinical Case

This book presents students and practitioners with the fundamental models by providing examples of case formulations which represent the most common mental health problems found within a variety of populations and contexts. These include:

  • Depression in a middle–aged woman
  • Psychosis
  • An eating disorder
  • Hoarding in an older adult
  • Anger in a person with intellectual disabilities

Each chapter describes a case, before presenting two contrasting formulations and a commentary from a different perspective. These examples not only provide the reader with clear models of case formulations, they also highlight the different constructs and world views that characterize alternate theoretical approaches to case formulation.

 

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