The Use of Illness Behaviour Concepts in Psychiatry

  • Richard Mayou


Traditional psychiatric nomenclature developed in mental hospitals is often inappropriate for the much wider variety of common and clinically important psychosocial difficulties encountered in general hospitals and in primary care. These include distress of less than psychiatric severity, social and behavioural problems, and continued medical care-seeking in the absence of disease. Psychiatrists have viewed Mechanic’s (1961) description of “illness behaviour” as answering the need for a broader view bringing together the whole variety of psychological and social influence on illness and all the range of psychological and social consequences of being ill.


Somatic Symptom Physical Illness Pain Clinic Illness Behaviour Behavioural Category 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard Mayou
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryOxford UniversityUK

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