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A Blood Test for Diagnosing Mental Illness?

Posted Oct 03 2008 12:52pm

This MSNBC article discusses recent research into diagnosing certain mental health issues, such as mood disorders, by examining the gene patterns found in a blood sample.  While the condescension around psychiatry "achieving parity" with other medical disciplines is irritating, the science in the article is interesting.  The article addresses some interesting issues that might possibly arise in these situations, such as a situation where the test says one thing, but the client indicates they are experiencing something different.  Nevertheless, the article does touch on the difficulties sometimes found in trying to accurately diagnose an individual's mental health issues (especially when the presentation is complicated and/or multifaceted), and there is the additional consideration that even the best intentioned individuals often have limited insight into their own issues.  A significantly accurate test that provides direction towards effective treatment would be a welcome advance.

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