Appearance & Behaviour


Assessment > Mental State Examination > Appearance & Behaviour

  • Descriptions of characteristics of patient, their appearance

- ethnic background

- dress

- body shape

- etc


  • Description of general behaviour including if appropriate or if there are any potential abnormal behaviours such as agitation or inappropriate in the context, they appear to be responding to unseen stimuli etc.


  • Comment on their self-care

- well kempt,

- unkempt or

- significantly dishevelled or malodorous


  • Comment on the patient reactions to yourself and others

for example open, hostile and guarded or frightened and avoidant;

comment on rapport


  • Comment on the degree of eye contact (good, poor, glaring or intermittent)

  • Can they remain on topic and engaged in the interview or are they distracted?

  • Do they appear to be oriented to their surroundings?

  • Comment in movements, for example decreased psychomotor activity, increased with agitation or any abnormal motor movements.