Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Diagnosis Flawed

This week I stopped smoking cigarettes while drinking coffee. I finished reading Codependent No More (after doing the work in the back of the chapters). I started reading Adult Children of Alcoholics.

Here is the definition of schizophrenia:

"According to the revised fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR), to be diagnosed with schizophrenia, three diagnostic criteria must be met:[4]

  1. Characteristic symptoms: Two or more of the following, each present for much of the time during a one-month period (or less, if symptoms remitted with treatment).
    If the delusions are judged to be bizarre, or hallucinations consist of hearing one voice participating in a running commentary of the patient's actions or of hearing two or more voices conversing with each other, only that symptom is required above. The speech disorganization criterion is only met if it is severe enough to substantially impair communication.
  2. Social/occupational dysfunction: For a significant portion of the time since the onset of the disturbance, one or more major areas of functioning such as work, interpersonal relations, or self-care, are markedly below the level achieved prior to the onset.
  3. Duration: Continuous signs of the disturbance persist for at least six months. This six-month period must include at least one month of symptoms (or less, if symptoms remitted with treatment).
If signs of disturbance are present for more than a month but less than six months, the diagnosis of schizophreniform disorder is applied.[4] Psychotic symptoms lasting less than a month may be diagnosed as brief psychotic disorder, and various conditions may be classed as psychotic disorder not otherwise specified." --Wikipedia, March, 2010

At least one of the threee criteria for diagnosing schizophrenia was not met when I was diagnosed in March, 1996. Thus, the diagnosis itself is flawed.

I did not show "continuous signs of the disturbance [persisting] for at least six months." I remember being fine on New Year's Eve, when we celebrated with friends. I went home early in the morning to sleep rather than continuing to celebrate with the friends at the casino. So, there could not have been "continuous signs" for as long as required (six months). I was fine on January 1, 1996. I showed no symptoms whatsoever.

My situation was not taken into account. When I arrived at the hospital I told the admitting nurse that I was suffering from PTSD. This was not taken into account at all. Perhaps me saying that was misread as a "delusion". Perhaps the admitting nurse had never heard of PTSD and I had to say Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, as I later thought. That was not considered whatsoever, as she forced me into a hospital gown and onto a metal bed under straps for what must have been over twelve to fourteen hours (the entirety of the night). The pain I experienced on that metal bed under straps is difficult to describe.

There was a camera on the ceiling, filming, I suppose, me on the metal bed under straps at my wrists and ankles. I had nothing on under a hospital gown. I could barely move at all for all of those hours. The pain I felt was huge during those hours, fourteen hours or so, I estimate.

I felt as if there were a noose around my neck. I felt as if I couldn't breathe. I couldn't move or escape. It was torture, pure torture, with no reason to it. I did nothing that warranted that torture.

I was later told that one has to be "a danger to her/himself or others" to be forced into a psychiatric hospital. I was neither when I was forced into one. I was not suicidal nor a threat to anyone.

  • medication: 5 mg Aripiprazole a.m., 10 mg Aripiprazole before sleep
  • sleep: average 10.6 hrs
  • exercise: walked (farther than last week) every day but one
  • diet: made certain to eat breakfast every day
  • weight: 153 lbs.
  • mood: ok all mornings upon rising

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