The skills, attitudes and knowledge inherent in learning psychiatry are relevant to all doctors – and to all other health professionals. We have written this book with medical students and psychiatric trainees in mind, but anticipate it being a useful resource for any health professional interested in the subject.
We describe a practical approach towards psychiatry. Chapter 1 outlines the principles behind the practice of modern psychiatry and introduces the psychiatric assessment. Our guide to assessment comprises a basic psychiatric assessment (Chapter 2), followed by diagnosis-specific assessments (Chapter 3) and a guide to risk assessment (Chapter 4). Chapter 5 describes how to draw everything together and communicate the information to others. The recommendations in these chapters are summarized in a set of ‘quick guides’, included at the front of the book for easy reference.
The middle chapters cover the principles of aetiology (Chapter 6), treatment (Chapter 7) and psychiatric services (Chapter 8). Th e main psychiatric disorders of adults are covered in Chapters 9–15, followed by childhood disorders (Chapter 16) and learning disability (Chapter 17). Chapter 18 discusses psychiatry in non-psychiatric medical settings – the place where most psychiatry actually happens. Chapter 19 (Mental health and the law) is a new addition to the book and one you are likely to find useful in whichever setting you work.