Epistemological Challenges Presented by Health-Related Fields
Psychotherapy and Classification: Psychological, Psychodynamic, and Cognitive AspectsMundt C. · Backenstrass M.
Psychiatric Hospital, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany
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Psychotherapists’ needs for diagnoses and classification in terms of the psychosocial model of a disorder are different from those of the medical model of psychiatric disorders as predominantly used in the DSM and ICD manuals. The challenges emerging from these different diagnostic needs and traditions of diagnosing are formulated as three dichotomies: grouping according to a medical versus psychosocial perspective; using objective versus hermeneutic methodology with the claim of producing factual knowledge versus constructivistic self-interpretation; defining a lasting categorical diagnostic state for the present time versus a versatile monitoring process with attention to the most salient dysfunction at a given time. Disorder-specific psychotherapy cannot overcome these dichotomies. It needs to combine them, and by doing so to reconcile them. It would be desirable that future diagnostic manuals meet psychotherapists’ diagnostic needs.
© 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel
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