Division of Clinical Psychology (DCP) calls for paradigm shift away from ‘disease model’

British Division of Clinical Psychology (DCP) calls for paradigm shift away from ‘disease model’

Post #247 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-2Zj

Update: Prof Richard Bentall on BBC Radio 4 Start the Week, Monday, May 13, 2013

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01sd3jq

Lucy Johnstone on BBC Radio 4 Today programme, Monday, May 13, 2013 | 2 hours 50 mins in from start

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01sd3jn

Lucy Johnstone article at Mad in America, May 13, 2013:

UK Clinical Psychologists Call for the Abandonment of Psychiatric Diagnosis and the ‘Disease’ Model

Lucy Johnstone World Service interview  | MP3 file | 8.2 MB at Dropbox (no Dropbox account required)

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Update: Statement released: May 13, 2013

Division of Clinical Psychology

Position Statement on the Classification of Behaviour and Experience in Relation to Functional Psychiatric Diagnoses

Time for a Paradigm Shift

Click link for PDF document   Position Statement on Diagnosis

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Today’s Observer reports on the release, tomorrow, of a Position Statement by the British Division of Clinical Psychology (DCP), a sub-division of the British Psychological Society, calling for the abandonment of diagnosis and the ‘illness/disease’ model.

Observer

Psychiatrists under fire in mental health battle
(British) Psychological Society to launch attack on rival profession, casting doubt on biomedical model of mental illness

Jamie Doward | May 12, 2013

“…In a groundbreaking move that has already prompted a fierce backlash from psychiatrists, the British Psychological Society’s division of clinical psychology (DCP) will on Monday issue a statement declaring that, given the lack of evidence, it is time for a “paradigm shift” in how the issues of mental health are understood. The statement effectively casts doubt on psychiatry’s predominantly biomedical model of mental distress – the idea that people are suffering from illnesses that are treatable by doctors using drugs. The DCP said its decision to speak out “reflects fundamental concerns about the development, personal impact and core assumptions of the (diagnosis) systems”, used by psychiatry…”

Also in today’s Observer, opposing positions from Oliver James and Professor Sir Simon Wessely, a member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and chair of psychological medicine at King’s College London, in which he defends the need to create classification systems for mental disorder and downplays the influence of the DSM:

Do we need to change the way we are thinking about mental illness?
Experts on both sides of the debate over the classification of mental disorders make their case

The Observer | Oliver James | Prof Sir Simon Wessely | Sunday 12 May 2013

Comment from Allen Frances, MD, on Huffington Post, on today’s Observer report:

[Note the position statement is issued by the Division of Clinical Psychology (DCP), a sub-division of the British Psychological Society (BPS) and is not the official position of the BPS.]

 The Inmates Seem to Have Taken Over the Asylum

“…Then the NIMH recklessly renounced all syndromal DSM diagnosis as invalid. But NIMH has nothing to offer now in its place except an oversold and undeliverable promise of some future strictly biological model of mental illness that will take decades to deliver — assuming it can ever be delivered at all…

“…Now the British Psychological Society has produced its own brand of extremist posturing, offering its own quixotic paradigm shift..”


Further mainstream media coverage of the DSM debate

An Editorial and an Opinion piece in the New York Times:

Editorial

Shortcomings of a Psychiatric Bible

The Editorial Board | May 11, 2013

Opinion

Why the Fuss Over the D.S.M.-5?

Sally Satel | May 11, 2013


Nature | News

Psychiatry framework seeks to reform diagnostic doctrine

Critics say clinical manual unfit for mental-health research.

Heidi Ledford | May 10, 2013

Quotes from NIMH’s director, Thomas Insel; epidemiologist, Jane Costello, who resigned from the DSM-5 Work Group for Child and Adolescent Disorders in 2009, and Steven Hyman, a former NIMH director and a former DSM-5 Task Force member, who has chaired the APA-WHO International Advisory Group for the Revision of ICD-10 Mental and Behavioural Disorders [Members].


New Scientist Print edition

Feature article This Week

How a scientific DSM will transform psychiatry

Peter Aldhous, Andy Coghlan and Sara Reardon | May 8, 2013

This article appears in the print edition under the headline “A revolution in mental health, Patients deserve better than an unscientific manual, says leading health institute.”

Also in this week’s New Scientist print edition:

Editorial Opinion

Don’t count on this manual, The future of psychiatric research lies in simpler questions

Allen Frances, MD | May 8, 2013

A longer version of this Allen Frances opinion piece appeared online, earlier in the week, here

Somatic Symptom Disorder paper in Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry

Somatic Symptom Disorder paper (Frances and Chapman) published in May edition of Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry

Post #244 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-2Wi

ANZJP is a subscription journal.

Commentary by Frances and Chapman discussing the over-inclusive DSM-5 Somatic Symptom Disorder criteria and potential implications for diverse patient groups. The paper concludes by advising clinicians not to use the new SSD diagnosis.

http://anp.sagepub.com/content/current

Commentaries

DSM-5 somatic symptom disorder mislabels medical illness as mental disorder

Aust N Z J Psychiatry May 2013 47: 483-484, doi:10.1177/0004867413484525

Allen Frances¹, Suzy Chapman²

1 Department of Psychiatry, Duke University
2 DxRevisionWatch.com

http://anp.sagepub.com/content/47/5/483.full
http://anp.sagepub.com/content/47/5/483.full.pdf+html

A further commentary on the Somatic Symptom Disorder criteria by Allen Frances, MD, who had chaired the Task Force for DSM-IV, is in press for the June 2013 edition of The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease.

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A second paper, Catatonia from Kahlbaum to DSM-5, by David Healy, is also published in this month’s edition of ANZJP:

May 2013; 47 (5)

Perspectives

Viewpoint

David Healy

Catatonia from Kahlbaum to DSM-5

Aust N Z J Psychiatry May 2013 47: 412-416, doi:10.1177/0004867413486584

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Further reading

APA Somatic Symptom Disorder Fact Sheet

Somatic Chapter Drops Centrality Of Unexplained Medical Symptoms Psychiatric News, Mark Moran, March 1, 2013

Somatic Symptoms Criteria in DSM-5 Improve Diagnosis, Care David J Kupfer, MD, Chair, DSM-5 Task Force, defends the SSD construct, Huffington Post, February 8, 2013

The new somatic symptom disorder in DSM-5 risks mislabeling many people as mentally ill Allen Frances, MD, BMJ 2013;346:f1580 BMJ Press Release

Somatic Symptom Disorder could capture millions more under mental health diagnosis Suzy Chapman, May 26, 2012

Mislabeling Medical Illness As Mental Disorder Allen Frances, MD, Psychology Today, DSM 5 in Distress, December 8, 2012

Why Did DSM 5 Botch Somatic Symptom Disorder? Allen Frances, MD, Psychology Today, Saving Normal, February 6, 2013

New Psych Disorder Could Mislabel Sick as Mentally Ill Susan Donaldson James, ABC News, February 27, 2013

Dimsdale JE. Medically unexplained symptoms: a treacherous foundation for somatoform disorders? Psychiatr Clin North Am 2011;34:511-3. [PMID: 21889675]

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) to ditch the DSM

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) to ditch the DSM

Post #241 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-2UL

An edited version of the post published on May 3

DSM5NIMH to ditch DSM

Earlier this week, in a blog dated April 29, Thomas Insel, National Institute of Mental Health’s Director, quietly drove another nail into the coffin of DSM-5.

NIMH, part funders of the 13 DSM-5 Research Planning Conferences held between 2004 and 2008 and the monographs that resulted out of them, announced that NIMH “will be re-orienting its research away from DSM categories.”

I don’t have figures for how much funding NIMH has sunk into the development of DSM-5.

This announcement comes just three weeks before the American Psychiatric Association launches its next edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, with a clutch of spin off publications scheduled for release in May and September.

APA has yet to issue a statement or comment in the press.

At the end of this post are links to the NIMH Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) posted in 2011, and a commentary by James Phillips, MD, for Psychiatric Times, from April 2011: “DSM-5 and the NIMH Research Domain Criteria Project.”

You can read Thomas Insel’s announcement in full, below, followed by a round up of media coverage.

Additional coverage and commentary is being added, as it comes in, below the NIMH announcement in the pale blue box.

Most recently added: Dr Tad; Neurocritic BlogSpot

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On April 24, in Mental health: On the spectrum, Nature had reported:

Research suggests that mental illnesses lie along a spectrum — but the field’s latest diagnostic manual still splits them apart…

“…The APA claims that the final version of DSM-5 is a significant advance on the previous edition and that it uses a combination of category and dimensional diagnoses. The previously separate categories of substance abuse and substance dependence are merged into the new diagnosis of substance-use disorder. Asperger’s syndrome is bundled together with a handful of related conditions into the new category called autism-spectrum disorder; and OCD, compulsive hair-pulling and other similar disorders are grouped together in an obsessive–compulsive and related disorders category. These last two changes, Regier says, should help research scientists who want to look at links between conditions. “That probably won’t make much difference to treatment but it should facilitate research into common vulnerabilities,” he says.

“The Research Domain Criteria project is the biggest of these research efforts. Last year, the NIMH approved seven studies, worth a combined US$5 million, for inclusion in the project — and, Cuthbert says, the initiative “will represent an increasing proportion of the NIMH’s translational-research portfolio in years to come”. The goal is to find new dimensional variables and assess their clinical value, information that could feed into a future DSM.

“One of the NIMH-funded projects, led by Jerzy Bodurka at the Laureate Institute for Brain Research in Tulsa, Oklahoma, is examining anhedonia, the inability to take pleasure from activities such as exercise, sex or socializing. It is found in many mental illnesses, including depression and schizophrenia.

“Bodurka’s group is studying the idea that dysfunctional brain circuits trigger the release of inflammatory cytokines and that these drive anhedonia by suppressing motivation and pleasure. The scientists plan to probe these links using analyses of gene expression and brain scans. In theory, if this or other mechanisms of anhedonia could be identified, patients could be tested for them and treated, whether they have a DSM diagnosis or not.

“One of the big challenges, Cuthbert says, is to get the drug regulators on board with the idea that the DSM categories are not the only way to prove the efficacy of a medicine. Early talks about the principle have been positive, he says. And there are precedents: “Pain is not a disorder and yet the FDA gives licences for anti-pain drugs,” Cuthbert says.

“Going back to the drawing board makes sense for the scientists, but where does it leave DSM-5? On the question of dimensionality, most outsiders see it as largely the same as DSM-IV. Kupfer and Regier say that much of the work on dimensionality that did not make the final cut is included in the section of the manual intended to provoke further discussion and research. DSM-5 is intended to be a “living document” that can be updated online much more frequently than in the past, Kupfer adds. That’s the reason for the suffix switch from V to 5; what comes out next month is really DSM-5.0. Once the evidence base strengthens, he says, perhaps as a direct result of the NIMH project, dimensional approaches can be included in a DSM-5.1 or DSM-5.2…”

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) announcement

Transforming Diagnosis

By Thomas Insel on April 29, 2013

Thomas R. Insel, M.D., is Director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).

“…Patients with mental disorders deserve better. NIMH has launched the Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) project to transform diagnosis by incorporating genetics, imaging, cognitive science, and other levels of information to lay the foundation for a new classification system…”

“…That is why NIMH will be re-orienting its research away from DSM categories. Going forward, we will be supporting research projects that look across current categories – or sub-divide current categories – to begin to develop a better system….”

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Dr Tad Blog

Paradigms lost: NIMH, McGorry & DSM-5’s failure

Dr Tad | May 4, 2013


Neurocritic Blogspot

RDoC Dimensional Approach for Research vs. DSM-5 for Diagnosis

Neurocritic | May 5, 2013


Article in Romanian

DESCOPERĂ

Cea mai importantă ştiinţă a minţii umane, psihiatria, se transformă în urma unei decizii importante


Article in French

Psychomédia

Le National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) américain se distance du DSM-5 de l’American Psychiatric Association

Soumis par Gestion le 3 mai 2013

“Le National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) américain réoriente ses recherches en se distançant du DSM, le Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, dont la cinquième édition sera lancée par l’American Psychiatric Association le 22 mai, explique son directeur, Thomas Insel, dans un billet publié le 29 avril…”


Article in Turkish

Psikiyatristler DSM tanı kriterlerini terk ediyor!

Dünyadaki en büyük ruh sağlığı araştırma kurumlarından ABD Ulusal Sağlık Kurumu (NIMH), psikiyatrik rahatsızlıkların semptomlara bağlı olarak belirlenmesine dayanan tanı yöntemini terk ediyor.

Pazar, 05 Mayıs 2013


Scientific American John Horgan Blog

Psychiatry in Crisis! Mental Health Director Rejects Psychiatric “Bible” and Replaces With… Nothing

“NIMH director Insel doesn’t mention it, but I bet his DSM decision is related to the big new Brain Initiative, to which Obama has pledged $100 million next year.”

John Horgan | May 4, 2013


Psychology Today
Side Effects | Christopher Lane Ph.D.

The NIMH Withdraws Support for DSM-5
The latest development is a humiliating blow to the APA.

Christopher Lane, Ph.D. | May 4, 2013


Government Health IT

NIMH moving beyond DSM

Anthony Brino, Associate Editor | May 3, 2013


1 Boring Old Man

old news…

1 Boring Old Man | May 3, 2013


Previously posted

Mindhacks blog

National Institute of Mental Health abandoning the DSM

“In a potentially seismic move, the National Institute of Mental Health – the world’s biggest mental health research funder, has announced only two weeks before the launch of the DSM-5 diagnostic manual that it will be “re-orienting its research away from DSM categories”.

In the announcement, NIMH Director Thomas Insel says the DSM lacks validity and that “patients with mental disorders deserve better”.

This is something that will make very uncomfortable reading for the American Psychiatric Association as they trumpet what they claim is the ‘future of psychiatric diagnosis’ only two weeks before it hits the shelves.

As a result the NIMH will now be preferentially funding research that does not stick to DSM categories…”


New Scientist

Psychiatry divided as mental health ‘bible’ denounced

Andy Coghlan and Sara Reardon | May 3, 2013

“The world’s biggest mental health research institute is abandoning the new version of psychiatry’s “bible” – the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, questioning its validity and stating that “patients with mental disorders deserve better”. This bombshell comes just weeks before the publication of the fifth revision of the manual, called DSM-5…”

“…We cannot succeed if we use DSM categories as the gold standard,” says Insel. “That is why NIMH will be reorienting its research away from DSM categories,” says Insel. Prominent psychiatrists contacted by New Scientist broadly support Insel’s bold initiative. However, they say that given the time it will take to realise Insel’s vision, diagnosis and treatment will continue to be based on symptoms.

“Insel is aware that what he is suggesting will take time – probably at least a decade, but sees it as the first step towards delivering the “precision medicine” that he says has transformed cancer diagnosis and treatment. It’s potentially game-changing, but needs to be based on underlying science that is reliable,” says Simon Wessely of the Institute of Psychiatry at King’s College London. “It’s for the future, rather than for now, but anything that improves understanding of the etiology and genetics of disease is going to be better [than symptom-based diagnosis].”


New Scientist opinion piece

One manual shouldn’t dictate US mental health research

“The new edition of the DSM “bible” is so flawed that the US National Institute of Mental Health is right to abandon it, says Allen Frances”

Allen Frances, MD | May 3, 2013


@AllenFrancesMD on Twitter

@AllenFrancesMD: @dxrevisionwatch Hype alert. The NIMH dx approach is a necessary, but guarantees nothing in the future and offers nothing in the present.


The Verge

Federal institute for mental health abandons controversial ‘bible’ of psychiatry

Katie Drummond | May 3, 2013

“In a surprising move, the US government institute responsible for overseeing mental health research is distancing itself from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM. The DSM has, for several decades, been perceived as the “bible” that delegates how psychiatric illnesses are defined, diagnosed, and treated.”

“The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) — which funds more research into mental illness than any other agency in the world — this week announced a plan to re-orient its investigations “away from DSM categories.” The move comes mere weeks before the publication of the DSM-5, an update to the manual that’s been mired in controversy because of several contentious changes to existing diagnostic criteria…”


CBS News

National Institute of Mental Health no longer will use DSM diagnoses in studies

Stephanie Pappas | Livescience.com | May 3, 2013


Pharmalive

NIMH Director Says The Bible Of Psychiatry Lacks Validity

Ed Silverman | May 3, 2013


MIT Technology Review

NIMH Will Drop Widely Used Psychiatry Manual

Susan Young | May 3, 2013


Science 2.0

NIMH Delivers A Kill Shot To DSM-5

By Hank Campbell | May 3, 2013


Pacific Standard [Not on NIMH announcement]

Psychiatry’s Contested Bible: How the New DSM Treats Addiction

The 1,000-page psychiatrists’ Big Book will redefine addiction. Critics are already demanding a boycott.

Michael Dhar | May 3, 2013


Drug Rehab [Not on NIMH announcement]

Somatic Symptom Disorder

drugrehab in Mental Health | April 30, 2013

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Related material

DSM-5 and the NIMH Research Domain Criteria Project  Psychiatric Times, James Phillips, MD, April 13, 2011

NIMH Research Domain Criteria (RDoC)  Draft 3.1: June, 2011

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‘Somatic Symptom Disorder’ in Current Biology, 22 April, 2013

‘Somatic Symptom Disorder’ in Current Biology

Post #238 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-2NG

The April 22 edition of Current Biology publishes a feature article on DSM-5 by science writer, Michael Gross, Ph.D.

The article includes quotes from Suzy Chapman and Allen Frances on the implications for diverse patient groups for the introduction of the new Somatic Symptom Disorder into the next edition of the DSM, scheduled for release in May.

The article also mentions the influence of Somatic Symptom Disorder on proposals for a new ICD category – Bodily Distress Disorder – being field tested for ICD-11 and ICD-11-PHC [1].

…Chapman and Frances are concerned that the new definition of SSD will also be reflected in ICD-11. ICD-11 is field testing a new category Bodily Distress Disorder proposed to replace six or seven existing ICD-10 somatoform disorders, which, according to working group reports on emerging proposals, mirrors the DSM-5 somatic symptom disorder definition, says Chapman.

The article can be read in full at:

Current Biology 22 April, 2013 Volume 23, Issue 8

Copyright 2013 All rights reserved. Current Biology, Volume  23, Issue  8, R295-R298, 22 April 2013
doi:10.1016/j.cub.2013.04.009

Feature

Has the manual gone mental?

Michael Gross

Full text: http://www.cell.com/current-biology/fulltext/S0960-9822(13)00417-X

PDF: http://download.cell.com/current-biology/pdf/PIIS096098221300417X.pdf

1 ICD-11 Beta drafting platform: Chapter 5: Bodily Distress Disorder: Mild; Moderate; Severe

Three BMJ letters published in response to Somatic Symptom Disorder commentary

Three letters are published this week in response to Allen Frances’ BMJ commentary on ‘Somatic Symptom Disorder’

Post #237 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-2No

On March 19, BMJ published a commentary by Allen Frances, MD, with contribution from Suzy Chapman, in both the print and online editions, strongly opposing the inclusion of ‘Somatic Symptom Disorder’ in the forthcoming DSM-5:

PERSONAL VIEW
The new somatic symptom disorder in DSM-5 risks mislabeling many people as mentally ill
This new condition suggested in the bible of mental health diagnoses lacks specificity, says Allen Frances

The opinion piece was also featured as US Editor’s Choice:

DSM-5 and the rough ride from approval to publication
Edward Davies, US news and features editor, BMJ

BMJ press released the commentary which was picked up by a number of international media sites including UK Times and Deborah Brauser for Medscape Medical News. To date, 31 Rapid Responses have been received.

Three letters (all US respondents) are printed in this week’s BMJ print edition (20 April 2013 Vol 346, Issue 7904). The letters are behind a paywall so I am giving links to the original BMJ Rapid Responses, with the caveat that responses may have been edited for the print edition:

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LETTERS
New somatic symptom disorder in DSM-5

Helping to find the most accurate diagnosis

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f2228 (Published 16 April 2013) BMJ 2013;346:f2228
Joel E Dimsdale, professor of psychiatry emeritus, Michael Sharpe, professor of psychiatry, Francis Creed, professor of psychiatry, DSM-5 Somatic Symptom Disorders work group  BMJ Rapid Response 20 March 2013

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Guilty of diagnostic expansion

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f2254 (Published 16 April 2013) BMJ 2013;346:f2254
James Phillips, psychiatrist, USA  BMJ Rapid Response 25 March 2013

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A step in the wrong direction

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f2233 (Published 16 April 2013) BMJ 2013;346:f2233
Steven A King, chair, DSM-IV and DSM-IV-TR pain disorders committees; Pain Management and Psychiatry, New York  BMJ Rapid Response 28 March 2013

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Further reading:

Somatic Symptom Disorder could capture millions more under mental health diagnosis Suzy Chapman, May 26, 2012
Mislabeling Medical Illness As Mental Disorder Allen Frances, MD, Psychology Today, DSM 5 in Distress, December 8, 2012
Why Did DSM 5 Botch Somatic Symptom Disorder? Allen Frances, MD, Psychology Today, Saving Normal, February 6, 2013
New Psych Disorder Could Mislabel Sick as Mentally Ill Susan Donaldson James, ABC News, February 27, 2013
Dimsdale JE. Medically unexplained symptoms: a treacherous foundation for somatoform disorders? Psychiatr Clin North Am 2011;34:511-3. [PMID: 21889675]

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American Psychiatric Association justifications for SSD:

APA Somatic Symptom Disorder Fact Sheet 
Somatic Chapter Drops Centrality Of Unexplained Medical Symptoms Psychiatric News, Mark Moran, March 1, 2013
Somatic Symptoms Criteria in DSM-5 Improve Diagnosis, Care David J Kupfer, MD, Chair, DSM-5 Task Force, defends the SSD construct, Huffington Post, February 8, 2013

DSM-5 Round up: April #1

DSM-5 Round up: April #1

Post #231 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-2In

New York Post

A disease called ‘childhood’

Do 1 in 5 NYC preteens really suffer a mental woe? A psychiatry expert argues we’re overdiagnosing —and overmedicating — our kids

Allen Frances MD | March 30, 2013

Last week, The Post reported that more than 145,000 city children struggle with mental illness or other emotional problems. That estimate, courtesy of New York’s Health Department, equals an amazing 1 in 5 kids. Could that possibly be true?

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BBC Radio 4

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01rl1q8

Medicalising Grief

Will the book that classifies mental illness lead to the medicalisation of grief?

Presented by Matthew Hill. Featuring Drs Jerome Wakefield, Lisa Cosgrove, Allen Frances (Chaired the Task Force for DSM-IV), Joanne Cacciatore and Gary Greenberg.

Available to listen again for the next 7 days online.

Counseling Today ACA podcasts help counselors prepare for DSM-5

Heather Rudow | March 27, 2013

Rebecca Daniel-Burke, ACA’s [American Counseling Association]director of professional projects and staff liaison to ACA’s DSM-5 Task Force, hosts the podcast series, which offers counselors a way to prepare for and understand potential changes. Daniel-Burke spoke with K. Dayle Jones for the first, 38-minute podcast, and Jason King for the second, which is 52 minutes long and available for CE credit…

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The New York Times invited readers to respond for a dialogue about psychiatric diagnoses and the forthcoming DSM-5. The dialogue was initiated by a letter from Ronald Pies, which concludes “‘Diagnosis’ means knowing the difference between one condition and another. For many patients, learning the name of their disorder may relieve years of anxious uncertainty. So long as diagnosis is carried out carefully and respectfully, it may be eminently humanizing. Indeed, diagnosis remains the gateway to psychiatry’s pre-eminent goal of relieving the patient’s suffering.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/20/opinion/invitation-to-a-dialogue-psychiatric-diagnoses.html

Ronald Pies

Controversy surrounding the soon-to-be-released fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM-5 — often called “psychiatry’s bible” — has cast a harsh light on psychiatric diagnosis. For psychiatry’s more radical critics, psychiatric diagnoses are merely “myths” or “socially constructed labels.” But even many who accept the reality of, say, major depression argue that current psychiatric diagnoses often “stigmatize” or “dehumanize” people struggling with ordinary grief, stress or anxiety…

Published responses:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/24/opinion/sunday/sunday-dialogue-defining-mental-illness.html

Letters
Sunday Dialogue: Defining Mental Illness

Response to Letters from Ronald Pies via Psychiatric Times

http://www.psychiatrictimes.com/blog/pies/content/article/10168/2135248

Diagnosis and its Discontents: The DSM Debate Continues

Ronald W. Pies, MD | 29 March 2013

Dr Pies is Editor-in-Chief Emeritus of Psychiatric Times, and a professor in the psychiatry departments of SUNY Upstate Medical University and Tufts University School of Medicine. He is the author of The Judaic Foundations of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy; a collection of short stories, Ziprin’s Ghost; and, most recently, a poetry chapbook, The Heart Broken Open. His most recent book is The Three-Petalled Rose: How the Synthesis of Judaism, Buddhism, and Stoicism Can Create a Healthy, Fulfilled and Flourishing Life (iUniverse: 2013).

“As to diseases, make a habit of two things—to help, or at least to do no harm.”
–Hippocrates, Epidemics, in Hippocrates, trans. W. H. S. Jones (1923), Vol. I, 165 [italics added]

“An agnostic is someone who doesn’t know, and di- is a Greek prefix meaning “two.” So “diagnostic” means someone who doesn’t know twice as much as an agnostic doesn’t know.”
–Walt Kelly, Pogo

A funny thing happened to me on the way to the New York Times “Sunday Dialogue” —I made myself unclear.¹ This is not supposed to happen to careful writers, or to those of us who flatter ourselves with that honorific. So what went wrong?

In brief, I greatly underestimated the public’s strong identification of psychiatric diagnosis with the categorical approach of the recent DSMs. But whereas my letter to the Times was indeed occasioned by DSM-5’s release in May, my argument in defense of psychiatric diagnosis was not a testimonial in favor of any one type of diagnostic scheme—categorical, dimensional, prototypical² or otherwise…

http://www.meactionuk.org.uk/The-Achilles-Heel.htm

Stephen Ralph | March 30, 2013

In recent years I have been considering the reliability of the whole “CFS/ME” diagnostic process.

From personal experience I have encountered numerous doctors who failed to possess the detailed specialist knowledge they needed to make a diagnosis of Behçet’s disease at both GP and specialist level.

From personal experience I have learned that standard blood tests or even CT/MRI scans or indeed other diagnostic tests such as endoscopy can and do fail to detect a complex clinical disease present in a patient.

I have no doubt that there is a diagnostic black hole between the insufficient knowledge of the doctor and pathologies that are not detectable by the basic tests they choose to request which produce negative results they then choose to rely on.

The diagnoses of “CFS/ME” and now Somatic Symptom Disorder have in my view been deployed by liaison psychiatry to exploit that black hole.

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