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Psychiatric diagnosis across cultural boundaries
Am J Psychiatry 1985;142:798-805.
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Abstract

Diagnosis across cultural boundaries has become a practical rather than an esoteric matter as migration, the number of effective psychiatric therapies, and access to psychiatric care have increased. Cross- cultural diagnosis involves such theoretical considerations as diagnostic categories, pathoplasticity of psychiatric disorder, so- called culture-bound syndromes, "emic" (intracultural) versus "etic" (cross-cultural) conceptual frameworks, and different reporting of symptoms and expression of signs from one cultural group to another. Important clinical issues include distinguishing cultural belief systems from delusions and understanding the special problems of minority, migrant, and refugee patients.

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