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Unexplained or difficult to explain shortness of breath seems to be blamed on anxiety very frequently despite lack of diagnostic evidence, especially in individuals with psychiatric conditions. This is not helpful to people that experience shortness of breath as a side effect of medication or from other causes that have not been identified.

How can one make sure that the diagnosis (and vast symptoms) of anxiety isn't being applied too liberally and that the patient receives the best possible diagnosis/care (especially when there are concurrent psychiatric conditions)?

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    $\begingroup$ I vote to close this question, because it would be a better fit on Health.SE $\endgroup$ – Robin Kramer Jul 21 '16 at 6:14
  • $\begingroup$ @RobinKramer It's directly related to psychiatry so is on-topic. $\endgroup$ – Ryan Babchishin Jul 21 '16 at 7:54
  • $\begingroup$ As written this is too broad. "Unexplained or difficult to explain" needs specific examples. Basically you seem to be asking how shortness of breath is diagnosed, without giving an example or any reason to believe there is any related difficulty in doing so. $\endgroup$ – user3169 Jul 22 '16 at 3:56
  • $\begingroup$ @user3169 I guess a mod can vote to move the question. But I disagree and see nothing wrong with asking how prove a symptom is caused by anxiety. Anxiety is a very large umbrella term for anything that causes fear/unease, etc... it's a catch all for anything a doctor cannot explain. Blaming a symptom that cannot be explained on anxiety without proof, is a guess. A guess that can very likely result in no treatment at all. I'm pointing that out and asking how one could clarify a diagnosis. I specifically ask about shortness of breath as an example. Still too broad? $\endgroup$ – Ryan Babchishin Jul 22 '16 at 4:59
  • $\begingroup$ Are you asking what diagnostic process would be followed when the "usual" diagnostics don't work? Then, what is "usual"? By definition you can't make a diagnosis without evidence of some kind. $\endgroup$ – user3169 Jul 22 '16 at 16:23
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I think that if you combine the reading of the DSM with a pharmaceutical book such as the BNF you will get the desired results when you know what your client is prescribed.

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