(Received 2 January 1985; accepted 1 February 1985)
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Psychiatric and psychological assessment of criminal defendants is often complicated by the retrospective nature requiring (1) an overreliance on self-reported data and (2) the need to achieve a high degree of certainty in formulating the diagnosis and subsequent expert opinion within the context of an adversarial evaluation. The Multiple Schedule of Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia (SADS) evaluation involves the application of an extensive diagnostic interview that has demonstrated a high degree of reliability and satisfactory validity in making current and lifetime diagnoses. The multiple SADS entails sequential administrations of the SADS, first to the defendant and later to significant others regarding the defendant's functioning during the time period in question. This comprehensive approach allows for the systematic examination of individual symptoms and the clear delineation of disparities and areas of agreement. Usefulness of the multiple SADS evaluation is exemplified in a case study involving criminal responsibility.
Consultant in psychiatry, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
Senior psychologist, METFORS, Clark Institute of Psychiatry, Toronto, Ontario
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