Along with some forms of depression, anxiety states and phobias, the conditions discussed in this chapter are designated ‘neurotic’. This classification can be misleading: although it is generally true that the symptoms have a quality of understandability that the psychoses do not have, they can nevertheless cause great suffering and can be very resistant to treatment. Although the risk of suicide is less than for depression, it is still a danger in severe cases; patients with anorexia nervosa may die as a result of severe malnutrition; and in both anorexia nervosa and hysteria the patient can seem unaware of being psychologically disturbed, and even if not deluded, he certainly lacks the ability to make a realistic appraisal of his situation.
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