[The medical-psychiatric unit: added value for patients, physicians and hospitals].


Physical and mental illnesses commonly occur together. The quality of physical care in institutions for mental health in the Netherlands is not guaranteed. The cases of a 63-year-old woman with a schizoaffective disorder and diabetes mellitus who became delirious after surgery and a 76-year-old suicidal man with a psychotic disorder due to hydrocobalamine deficiency after major heart surgery show that the so-called medical-psychiatric unit, which is a part of the Psychiatric Department of a general hospital, may have several advantages in the treatment of combined physical and mental disorders. Both patients were admitted to such a unit. In this way, the internist of the first patient could continue to treat her and she could be treated with an infusion, urinary catheter and gastric intubation; in addition, laboratory investigations could be performed. The second patient, whose safety required primary attention, could also be treated for his somatic disorders and a delirium could be ruled out. His family was assisted in recovering from their traumatic life experience caused by his suicide attempt.

Cite this paper

@article{Waarde2004TheMU, title={[The medical-psychiatric unit: added value for patients, physicians and hospitals].}, author={Jeroen A. van Waarde and Christoph Richter and Martina Mueller and Bas Verwey}, journal={Nederlands tijdschrift voor geneeskunde}, year={2004}, volume={148 5}, pages={209-11} }