Showing posts from May, 2020

Medical Disorders: From Definition to Nature

There are different philosophical ways of conceptualizing "medical disorders". You could take an essentialistic approach, that medical disorders have necessary and sufficient properties which make them medical disorders (for instance, a demonstrate biological dysfunction). An different approach is a pragmatic one, in which there are no necessary and sufficient criteria, and the characterization of something as a medical disorder depends on various scientific as well as practical considerations (whether the condition is distressing, whether people are seeking help for it, are treatments available, etc.). According to the essentialistic approach, calling something a medical disorder means we are saying something about the nature of the condition. According to the pragmatic approach, calling something a medical disorder does not commit us to any particular view of the nature of the condition (I prefer the pragmatic approach). There are two other aspects of this discussion