Dr. Phil: Britney's Family Asked Me to See Her

01/07/2008 at 08:30 AM EST

Dr. Phil: Britney's Family Asked Me to See Her
Britney Spears (left) and Dr. Phil McGraw
INF; Photopro /Landov
Dr. Phil McGraw's visit with Britney Spears in Cedars-Sinai Medical Center was instigated by her family shortly after the pop star was admitted to the facility, the TV therapist confirmed on CBS's The Early Show Monday.

Saying he wished to set the record straight, McGraw said, "I went to see Britney at the request of her family, I talked to [her mother] Lynne, I talked to [her father] Jamie, I talked to Bryan, her brother. They were very frustrated that she apparently wasn't going to be held for a longer period of time."

Spears, 26, was hospitalized early the morning of Jan. 4 under California's "5150 Hold," in which she was deemed a danger to herself or others and could be held for 72 hours for evaluation. But Spears left the hospital on Saturday, well before the 72 hours. Patients can be released early if doctors determine they no longer require treatment or evaluation.

As for McGraw's entering the picture, he said, "Thursday night, the phone rang, and it was Lynne – and she has a very close relationship with my wife, Robin – and, clearly, she was very upset, which you would expect, as any parent would be."

McGraw, who would not discuss specifics of Britney's situation, did say, "I was first contacted by her family over a year ago and have maintained a running dialog with them throughout the last year."

Almost Unrecognizable

Kevin Frazier, of Entertainment Tonight, which will air more of the McGraw interview on Monday, said on the Early Show that the last reports of Spears had her at lunch in Palm Desert, Calif., on Sunday.

"She's been on the move since her release Saturday morning," he said.

He also said that Spears was "almost unrecognizable" when he and others recently saw her while they were at a press junket at the Beverly Hills Four Seasons Hotel. "A major movie star and several others walked right by her," he said.

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