MENTAL PHYSICAL HEALTH IN TEST FOR PHYSICAL HEALTH

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PostFavour on 2nd November 2012, 2:51 pm

Mental Status Examination or Mental State Examination (MSE) is an important part of clinical assessment process in psychiatric process. It is a structured way of observing and describing a patient’s current state of mind, under the domains of appearance, attitude, behaviour, mood and affect, speech, thought process, thought content, perception, cognition, insight and judgment.

The purpose of the MSE is to obtain a comprehensive cross-sectional description of the patient’s mental state, which when combined the biographical and historical information of the psychiatric history, allows the clinician to make accurate diagnosis and formulation which are required for coherent treatment planning. The data are collected through a combination of direct and indirect means: unstructured observation while obtaining the biographical and social information, focused questions about current symptoms, and formalised psychological tests

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The mental status examination is a core skill of Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Occupational therapist, Physician assistants, Nurse practitioners and other qualified mental health personnel. It is a key part of the initial psychiatric assessment in an out-patient or psychiatric hospital setting. It is a systematic collection of data based on observation of the patient's behavior while the patient is in the clinician's view during the interview. The purpose is to obtain evidence of symptoms and signs of mental disorders, including danger to self and others, that are present at the time of the interview. Further, information on the patient's insight, judgment, and capacity for abstract reasoning is used to inform decisions about treatment strategy and the choice of an appropriate treatment setting. It is carried out in the manner of an informal enquiry, using a combination of open and closed questions, supplemented by structured tests to assess cognition. The MSE can also be considered part of the comprehensive physical examination performed by physicians and nurses although it may be performed in a cursory and abbreviated way in non-mental-health settings. Information is usually recorded as free-form text using the standard headings, but brief MSE checklists are available for use in emergency situations, for example by paramedics or emergency department staff. The information obtained in the MSE is used, together with the biographical and social information of the psychiatric history, to generate a diagnosis, a psychiatric formulation and a treatment plan.


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