Diagnostic and Statistical Manual

Arnoldo Cantú

There’s a big, hairy problem shadowing our field: what, exactly, is a mental disorder? Is using diagnostic language helping or hurting our clients? The way... Read more

The Future of Diagnosis

Traveling Beyond the Limits of the DSM

Take a magical journey beyond the DSM’s pathologizing legacy to a place where therapists can name and categorize suffering, while still taking into account... Read more

Editor's Note: September/October 2023

Our Love-Hate Relationship with Diagnoses

When we hear the word diagnosis, it’s hard not to think of the DSM. The dreaded DSM. But hating this particular book is nothing new... Read more

A Never-Ending Adjustment Disorder

How Therapists Navigate the Paradox of Diagnosis

A lot can go awry when you identify a person with a disorder—but avoiding diagnosis altogether isn’t always the right solution either. How are therapists... Read more

Allen Frances, formerly of Duke University, wrote the clinical diagnosis for narcissistic personality disorder that first appeared in the third edition of the... Read more

The Medication Question

Do We Still Need Therapy?

Americans have a history of valuing quick-fix solutions to difficult problems. But the simplistic psychopharmacological approach to depressive disorders... Read more

Stronger Medicine

Anti-Depressants Haven't Made Therapy Obsolete

Americans have a history of valuing quick-fix solutions to difficult problems. But the simplistic psychopharmacological approach to depressive disorders... Read more

The Politics of PTSD

How a Diagnosis Battled Its Way into the DSM

During Vietnam, there were proportionately far fewer reported cases of trauma on the actual battlefield than there'd been in previous wars. The primary reason... Read more

VIDEO: The Hidden Toll of DSM-5 on Psychotherapy

How Increasing Medication Sales Hurt the Therapy Profession

Allen Frances—author of "Saving Normal: Has Psychiatric Diagnosis Gotten Out of Control?"—is one of DSM-5’s most outspoken critics, but his ultimate... Read more

Rather than continuing to lament the deficiencies of DSM-5, forensic psychiatrist David Mays wants to focus on what's ahead for the psychotherapy field. In his... Read more

Why DSM-5 Is a Step Forward for Psychotherapy

Find Out About the Benefits of Dimensional Diagnosis

In this video clip, Regier talks about how the new definition of a major depressive disorder in DSM-5 better enables clinicians to diagnose clients who exhibit... Read more

Understanding the Dangers of Diagnostic Epidemics

The Most Powerful Psychiatrist in America on Why DSM-5 Is a Step Backward

Allen Frances learned first-hand how, even when motivated by the best of intentions, changes in the “bible of psychiatry” can have large-scale negative... Read more

VIDEO: How Meeting Condition Criteria Doesn't Equal Mental Disorder

Jack Klott on One of the Diagnostic Changes in DSM-5

While the publication of DSM-5 came with many surprises, few were as shocking—or as controversial—as the number of changes made to diagnosis specifiers... Read more

VIDEO: DSM-5 and the Elimination of Disorders

Martha Teater on the Removal of Asperger's from DSM-5

Asperger’s no longer exists—at least not in the DSM-5. And there are other changes, like the omission of sexual addiction, that many therapists are... Read more

The Best DSM Ever Written?

Jack Klott, an Advocate for DSM-5, Speaks Out

Jack Klott discusses the DSM5 and why it's a triumph in the field, despite its flaws. Read more

VIDEO: Is Psychotherapy Becoming Overly Diagnostic?

Allen Frances on Why DSM-5's New Diagnoses Aren't Necessary

One of the most note-worthy changes in the DSM-5 is the abundance of new diagnoses that are included in this new edition. Many DSM-5 critics worry that this is... Read more

Discover How DSM-5 Will Affect Your Practice

Martha Teater on One of the Major Changes in DSM-5

Martha Teater discusses a huge change in the DSM-5 that many therapists are still adjusting to—diagnosis-specific severity scales. Read more

The Book We Love to Hate

Why DSM-5 Makes Nobody Happy

From small insignificant beginnings in 1952, when almost nobody read it, DSM has become a kind of sacred literary monster. Today, it’s the most detested and... Read more

Shedding Light on DSM-5

The View from the Trenches

While the polemical debates over the new DSM have received widespread coverage, the reactions of ordinary clinicians have yet to receive much scrutiny. Read more

Developmental Trauma Disorder: Distinguishing, Diagnosing, and the DSM

How One Tenacious Task Force Worked to Separate Developmental Trauma Disorder from PTSD in DSM-5

In 2005, a complex trauma task force began working on constructing a new diagnosis called Developmental Trauma Disorder, which, they hoped, would capture the... Read more

Examining the Most Controversial Change in DSM-5

Gary Greenberg On The Bereavement Exclusion

When examining the various changes made in DSM-5, Gary Greenberg finds the most controversial one to be the removal of the bereavement exclusion from the major... Read more

Responding to the Critics of DSM-5

Darrel Regier On Why Diagnostic Changes Were Made

Despite the number of criticisms it has incurred, there was a method to the so-called madness of DSM-5. Read more

What's The Value Of A Diagnostic Category In The DSM?

Gary Greenberg on the Role of Economic Factors in the Shaping of the DSM

Gary Greenberg deconstructs the DSM and how it affects the field and your practice. Read more

The Therapy Beat July 8, 2013

Unless DSM more firmly joins the march toward biological psychiatry, it’s going to be left behind by NIMH. Read more

The Therapy Beat November 1, 2012

The American Psychiatric Association is scheduled to publish the much-delayed fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) by May 2013. With... Read more

The Long Shadow of Trauma

Childhood Abuse May Be Our Number One Public Health Issue

As the battles and controversies over the forthcoming DSM-V heat up, a determined group of trauma experts and researchers are mounting a passionate challenge... Read more