Causation in clinical practice

It is usual in everyday psychiatry to have multiple causes acting together, involving the interplay of constitutional and environmental factors, to produce an episode of illness - so-called multifactorial causation. These factors include genetic predisposition, personality characteristics, physical disorders, social circumstances, and life experiences.

The accepted way of considering these subsidiary causes in psychiatry is in terms of various predisposing, precipitating, and perpetuating factors.

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