INCREASINGLY, efforts to define etiologic factors underlying serious psychiatric disturbance in children and adolescents have come to be based upon the view that an understanding of the processes resulting in the illness requires knowledge of the characteristics of the affected host equally with that of the environmental influences that are acting upon him. In general medicine this type of interaction is most frequently considered in relation to infectious disease and involves a delineation of the immunologic competence of the host together with the identification of the agent to which he has been exposed. In psychiatry our attention is similarly directed to the organism as a processor of his environment, as well as a responder to it. Moreover, since the nervous system is the organ of such processing, the role which primary dysfunction in this system may play in the etiology of serious mental illness has come to be a
HERTZIG ME, BIRCH HG. Neurologic Organization in Psychiatrically Disturbed Adolescent Girls. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1966;15(6):590–598. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1966.01730180030005
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