Two disorders that are comorbid or are diagnosed for the individual during the same time period are said to be co-occurring. One may be viewed as symptomatic of the other disorder but may also be characterized by its own particular symptoms and be classified accordingly. The two (or more) disorders are many times so intrinsically interrelated that it is difficult to determine which disorder led to the other–or if they were both precipitated by other factors or events. When an individual has been diagnosed with co-occurring disorders, she has what is referred to as a dual diagnosis.

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