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Structured Clinical Interview

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Updated February 15, 2009

Definition: A structured clinical interview is a tool that helps physicians, psychologists and researchers make an accurate diagnosis of a variety of mental illnesses, such as OCD. One of the most popular structured clinical interviews is the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM Disorders or SCID. Structured clinical interviews contain standardized questions to ensure that each patient is interviewed in the same way. These questions usually ask about the nature, severity and duration of symptoms. Questions you may be asked during a structured clinical interview include:
  • “What are the specific details of your obsessions and compulsions?”
  • “How long have you had these obsessions and compulsions?”
  • “How have these obsessions and compulsions affected your life?”
  • “Did your symptoms start after a new illness or taking a new drug?”
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