Dear Diagnosis,

I am in France, just returning from the excellent Congrès du Collège des Humanités médicales.  Of course, I am always looking for diagnosis topics in the real world.  I saw this poster in a French pharmacy.  Dear diabetes…. This health promotion poster sticks out its tongue at an anthropomorphised diabetes.  “I will watch my blood sugar, and you won’t mess with my life!”  it rants. … Continue reading Dear Diagnosis,

Detecting Diagnoses

The critical diagnosis scholar is travelling, which explains her silence. However, she’s been thinking about check ups, and their cultural situatedness in relation to diagnosis. The idea of an annual check up is one which she has been thinking about. In her home country of New Zealand, she doesn’t hear about them, but her sisters in the US talk about check-ups: something she remembers from … Continue reading Detecting Diagnoses

Transformative Diagnosis

I have just published a post on the College of Physicians Library in Philadelphia about the transformative power of diagnosis. The moment a serious diagnosis is announced is a solemn one, in which a kind of “truth” is delivered. Note that this image is called “the sentence” of death, linking diagnosis with legal metaphors. Diagnosis is cast as a moment of transformation, a concept I … Continue reading Transformative Diagnosis

Trends in Diagnosis

Mental illness, like obesity is commonly referred as “on the rise.” It’s important for the diagnosis scholar to look at this critically. This dossier by Mark Rice-Oxley in The Guardian explores this “global epidemic” and picks some holes in assumptions. Most of all, he brings social factors to the attention of the critical scholar. Figures show that increases in mental illness are only slightly higher … Continue reading Trends in Diagnosis

Diagnosis in the Courtroom

We’ve know that diagnosis has an important role in adjudicating. In the courtroom, a diagnosis may absolve an individual from guilt for illegal actions. But, it may also, as this article reveals, be used to describe suitability for parenting in custody cases. The author of this paper takes exception to its use, pointing out both the fallibility of the DSM as a diagnostic source, and … Continue reading Diagnosis in the Courtroom