Surveys have indicated that physical examination is a diagnostic tool that is infrequently used by psychiatrists. This is an unfortunate state of affairs in light of the act that the bio-psycho-social formulation of health-care problems is integral to the treatment of psychiatric disorders. The situation becomes all the more complex when faced with the high comorbidity of physical and psychiatric illness in the elderly presenting with depression. The physical examination, guided by a detailed history, must be considered an integral part of the assessment of depression in the elderly. A case study of polymyalgia rheumatica presenting as depression is utilized to underscore this imperative.
Ennis, MSW, MD, J.H.; LeClair, MD, FRCP (C), J.K.; Wadas, BSW, CSW, L.; and Patterson, MD, FRCP (C), C.
"Polymyalgia Rheumatica Presenting as Depression: The Role of the History and Physical Examination in Psychiatric Assessment,"
Jefferson Journal of Psychiatry:
2, Article 7.
Available at: http://jdc.jefferson.edu/jeffjpsychiatry/vol11/iss2/7