Tag Archives: American Psychiatric Association

Reuters—Battle Looms in Pychiatry World Over Controversial Manual Update

Lucy Johnstone, a consultant clinical psychologist for the Cwm Taf Health Board in Wales agreed: “(The DSM) is wrong in principle, based as it is on redefining a whole range of understandable reactions to life circumstances as ‘illnesses,’ which then become a target for toxic medications heavily promoted by the pharmaceutical industry,” she said.

“The DSM project cannot be justified, in principle or in practice. It must be abandoned so that we can find more humane and effective ways of responding to mental distress.”

NaturalNews— Are your imperfect relationships a disease? Psychiatry thinks so

The ever-expanding list of so-called psychiatric conditions included in the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) may soon include “relational disorders,” or mental illnesses supposedly attributed to two or more people involved in a relationship together.

According to the official definition, relational disorders are “persistent and painful patterns of feelings, behavior, and perceptions involving two or more partners in an important personal relationship.” A married couple, for instance, that continually fights would constitute a relational disorder, as would a troubled parent-child relationship.

If recognized and included in the manual, relational disorders will be the first psychiatric condition that involves more than one person. It will also be the first condition that exists only between two or more people, and not in a single individual.

Fox News: A psychiatrist tells the truth— it’s OK not to be ‘normal’

When Mark Twain’s hero Huckleberry Finn was forced to study spelling for an hour every day, he said, “I couldn’t stand it much longer. It was deadly dull, and I was fidgety.” His teacher, Miss Watson, threatened him with eternal damnation if he didn’t pay attention. Huck admits it didn’t seem like such a bad alternative. “But I didn’t mean no harm. All I wanted was to go somewheres; all I wanted was a change, I warn’t particular.”

If that had happened today, Huck would have been diagnosed as ADHD, put on Adderall, and forced to attend school, while the book about his adventures would never have been written.

The American Psychiatric Association invented the term “ADHD” in 1980 to give kids with hyperactivity, impulsivity, short attention span and easy distractibility a diagnosis.

Who would have thought that 28 years later, the National Center for Health Statistics would report that over 5 million American kids (8 percent) between the ages of 3-17 would receive this diagnosis? That’s 1 out of 12, with about half of those on medication.

ABC News: DSM-5 Criticized for Financial Conflicts of Interest—70% of task force members have ties to Pharma

Controversy continues to swell around the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, better known as DSM-5. A new study suggests the 900-page bible of mental health, scheduled for publication in May 2013, is ripe with financial conflicts of interest.

The manual, published by the American Psychiatric Association, details the diagnostic criteria and recommended treatments — many of which are pharmacological — for each and every psychiatric disorder. After the 1994 release of DSM-4, the APA instituted a policy requiring expert advisors to disclose drug industry ties. But the move toward transparency did little to cut down on conflicts, with nearly 70 percent of DSM-5 task force members reporting financial relationships with pharmaceutical companies — up from 57 percent for DSM-4.

Is Mourning Madness? The wrongheaded movement to classify grief as a mental disorder

Is grief a disease? That is one of the crucial questions psychologists are asking as the American Psychiatric Association revamps its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), used by millions of mental health professionals to diagnose patients, for a fifth edition due out in 2013.

A group of psychiatrists have spearheaded a movement to include ongoing grief as a disorder, to be labeled “complicated” or “prolonged grief.” Others have proposed, separately, that a mourner can be labeled clinically depressed only two weeks after the loss of a loved one. The problem with both potential changes is that more people’s grief will be diagnosed as abnormal or extreme, in a culture that already leads mourners to feel they need to just “get over it” and “heal.”