Like we’ve always said, there’s no science to psychiatric diagnoses/the DSM. Now, even some psychiatrists are agreeing

“No matter how DSM V will be written, it will be flawed. There is no psychiatric diagnosis which has an objective measure. At the moment, all diagnoses are clinical diagnoses, meaning they are subjective. This is a field of humility. There is a lot that we do not know. I think there should be an introduction to DSM V which clearly states that this book is a product of work groups…” – Shirah Vollmer, MD

Shirah Vollmer, MD
Psychology Today
December 30, 2009

We are about to embark on new psychiatric diagnoses, as there is soon to be a revision of our current Diagnostic and Statistic Manual (DSM). This new reference book is creating quite the stir. In 1999 a DSM V Reserach Planning Conference sponsored jointly by APA and the National Institute of Mental Health was held to set the research priorities. The DSM V task force was established in 2007 and it consists of 27 members. In June, 2009 Allen Frances, head of the DSM IV task force, issued the criticism that that DSM V will cause “false epidemics”. He wrote that “the work on DSM V has displayed the most unhappy combination of soaring ambition and weak methodology”.

Psychiatric diagnoses are made by committee. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual is published by the American Psychiatric Association and provides diagnostic criteria for mental disorders. It is used in the United States, and to varying degrees around the world by clinicians, researchers, psychiatric drug regulation agencies, health insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies and policy makers. It was first published in 1952 and there have been five revisions. The last publication was DSM-IV published in 1994, although there was a text revision produced in 2000. The next edition is scheduled to be released in May, 2013. Another classification systems is the mental disorders section of the International Statistical Classifiction of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD). This is used more often in Europe and other parts of the world.

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