Symptom Picture Case Study

Symptom Picture Case Study

Unit VIII Case Study

Read the clinical case of Mary on p. 451 in your textbook. Consider the following scenario:

You have been asked to observe Mary, a patient who has been receiving treatment at the outpatient center where you work. Mary clearly has a self-destructive pattern, and there is concern that she is a danger to herself or others. You have been assigned to prepare a briefing on Mary’s condition that you will submit to your supervisor at the treatment facility. The purpose of the brief is to identify what Mary may be suffering from and to determine the legal and ethical issues that may be involved with her case. PSY 2010, Abnormal Psychology 5

In your briefing, you should include the components below:

 Address the diagnosis and treatment.

o How are personality disorders diagnosed and clinically described using traditional and alternative methods?

o What are the symptoms of paranoid, antisocial, and avoidant personality disorders?

o What personality cluster best fits with Mary’s presentation, and which disorder most specifically describes her condition?

o What aspect of her behavior, over time, is the most central to your diagnosis?

o What aspect of her “symptom picture” might mislead you to an erroneous diagnosis, and what might that incorrect diagnosis be?

o What treatment approach(es) would best address the disorder?

 Identify the legal and ethical issues.

o At what point could outside agents legally intervene in this case?

o Who could intervene, and what steps could each actor take?

o If she committed a crime, would she be legally competent to stand trial? Why? What issues are involved in this decision?

o What aspects of her symptom pattern would suggest/justify a need for civil commitment?

Your brief must be a minimum of two pages in length, and it should be formatted in APA style, including title and reference pages. You must use a minimum of two sources, one of which must be an academic Internet source. If you have a question about whether a source is academic in nature, please contact your professor prior to using the source. All sources used must be cited in accordance with APA format.


Kring, A. M., Johnson, S. L., Davison, G. C., & Neale, J. M. (2016). Abnormal psychology: The science and treatment of psychological disorders (13th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.