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While it is stigmatising to be diagnosed as manic depressive or bi-
polar affective disorder it is even more stigmatising to be diagnosed as
suffering from 'chronic alcoholism'. Using 'Occams razor' we have no need
to multiply diagnoses needlessly. All Van Gogh's behaviours and symptoms
are commonly experienced by those who drink very heavily for days on end,
i.e. with a diagnosis of 'chronic alcoholism' or severe alcohol
dependence. Such symptoms and behaviours could include homicidal
behaviour, self-mutilation and attempted and completed suicide. Gross
disturbances are seen both in intoxication and withdrawal. We should not
allow sentiment to sway objective clinical judgement.