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The Problem: Concepts and Definitions of Mental Illness

  • John J. Schwab
  • Mary E. Schwab
Part of the Topics in General Psychiatry book series (TGPS)

Abstract

Early studies, as we have seen, made some basic contributions to psychiatric epidemiology. But around the turn of the nineteenth century further advances were halted by méthodologic limitations. These were: (1) inadequate and inaccurate data that seldom were collected uniformly or according to a research design; (2) the absence of a satisfactory nosology; and (3) the lack of prevalence estimates controlled for life expectancy. Of these, the problems with the conceptualization, definition, and classification of mental illness were fundamental. Moreover, they endure hampering investigators’ case-finding efforts and clouding research in this field with imprecision.

Keywords

Mental Health Mental Disorder Mental Illness Mental Health Professional Medical Model 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • John J. Schwab
    • 1
  • Mary E. Schwab
    • 2
  1. 1.University of LouisvilleLouisvilleUSA
  2. 2.Massachusetts Mental Health CenterBostonUSA

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