Clinical Descriptions and Diagnostic Guidelines (CDDG) for ICD‐11 Mental, Behavioural and Neurodevelopmental Disorders

Post #354 Shortlink:

The ICD-10 “Blue Book” and “Green Book”

In the World Health Organization’s ICD-10 Tabular List there are no disease or disorder descriptions, criteria or diagnostic guidelines in any chapters other than the brief description texts for disorders coded within Chapter V Mental and behavioural disorders.

The WHO describes these brief description texts as suitable for use by coders or clerical workers and to serve as a reference point for compatibility with other classifications. These brief texts are not recommended for use by mental health professionals.

Two companion publications were developed for use with ICD-10’s Chapter V which expand on these brief texts and provide clinical descriptions and diagnostic guidelines. These publications are available as license free downloads:

The ICD-10 Classification of Mental and Behavioural Disorders: Clinical descriptions and diagnostic guidelines (aka the “Blue Book”) intended for mental health professionals for general clinical, educational and service use:​

Click to access bluebook.pdf


The ICD-10 Diagnostic criteria for research (aka the “Green Book”) produced for research purposes and designed to be used in conjunction with the Clinical descriptions and diagnostic guidelines “Blue Book”:

Click to access GRNBOOK.pdf


A survey of nearly 5,000 psychiatrists in 44 countries sponsored by the WHO and the World Psychiatric Association found that 70% of respondents mostly used the ICD-10 classification system in their daily clinical work compared to 23% of practitioners primarily using the American Psychiatric Association’s DSM-IV [1].


ICD-11 and the CDDG

For ICD-11, the WHO Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse has developed the “Clinical Descriptions and Diagnostic Guidelines (CDDG) for ICD‐11 Mental, Behavioural and Neurodevelopmental Disorders.”

The CDDG provides expanded clinical descriptions, essential (required) features, boundaries with other disorders and normality, differential diagnoses, additional features, culture-related features and codes for all mental and behavioural disorders commonly encountered in clinical psychiatry; it is intended for mental health professionals and for general clinical, educational and service use.

The CDDG does not provide diagnostic criteria. The essential features are less rigid than DSM-5’s criteria sets and allow practitioners more flexibility to use clinical discretion when making a diagnosis.


CDDG review process

The CDDG review process has been undertaken via the Global Clinical Practice Network.

Qualified clinicians who signed up to participate in the CDDG guideline review process have been able to review and provide feedback on the draft content. No draft texts have been made available for public stakeholder scrutiny and comment and I have not had access, for example, to the most recent draft for the clinical descriptions and diagnostic guidelines for ICD-11’s Bodily distress disorder.

This paper in the February 2019 edition of World Psychiatry (Innovations and changes in the ICD-11 classification of mental, behavioural and neurodevelopmental disorders) describes major changes to the structure of the ICD‐11 classification of mental disorders as compared to ICD‐10; discusses new categories added for ICD‐11 and presents rationales for their inclusion; and describes important changes that have been made in each ICD‐11 disorder grouping [2].

What the paper does not give is a firm release date for the CDDG — stating only that the WHO will publish the CDDG as soon as possible following approval of the overall system by the World Health Assembly (WHA).

Member states approved the draft resolution to adopt ICD-11 at the 72nd World Health Assembly, in May 2019. Endorsement takes effect from January 01, 2022, which is the earliest date from which member states can begin reporting data using the new ICD-11 code sets.

Extract from Innovations and changes in the ICD-11 classification of mental, behavioural and neurodevelopmental disorders:

Disorders of bodily distress and bodily experience

ICD‐11 disorders of bodily distress and bodily experience encompass two disorders: bodily distress disorder and body integrity dysphoria. ICD‐11 bodily distress disorder replaces ICD‐10 somatoform disorders and also includes the concept of ICD‐10 neurasthenia. ICD‐10 hypochondriasis is not included and instead is reassigned to the OCRD [Ed: Obsessive‐compulsive and related disorders] grouping.

Bodily distress disorder is characterized by the presence of bodily symptoms that are distressing to the individual and an excessive attention directed toward the symptoms, which may be manifest by repeated contact with health care providers69. The disorder is conceptualized as existing on a continuum of severity and can be qualified accordingly (mildmoderate or severe) depending on the impact on functioning. Importantly, bodily distress disorder is defined according to the presence of essential features, such as distress and excessive thoughts and behaviours, rather than on the basis of absent medical explanations for bothersome symptoms, as in ICD‐10 somatoform disorders.

*Embedded links to the ICD-11 Orange Maintenance Platform disorder descriptions are not included in the paper.

DSM-5’s Somatic symptom disorder is listed under Synonyms to ICD-11’s Bodily distress disorder and indexed to 6C20.Z Bodily distress disorder, unspecified.

The CDDG is expected to be published as a licence free download. When the WHO has released the CDDG, I will update this post.


This Letter to the Editor published in the June 2019 edition of World Psychiatry (Public stakeholders’ comments on ICD-11 chapters related to mental and sexual health) summarizes common themes of the submissions for the mental disorder categories that generated the greatest response [3].


A majority of submissions regarding bodily distress disorder were critical, but were often made by the same individuals (N=8). Criticism mainly focused on conceptualization (48%; κ=0.64) and the disorder name (43%; κ=0.91). Use of a diagnostic term that is closely associated with the differently conceptualized bodily distress syndrome5 was seen as problematic. One criticism was that the definition relies too heavily on the subjective clinical decision that patients’ attention directed towards bodily symptoms is “excessive”. A number of comments (17%; κ=0.62) expressed concern that this would lead to patients being classified as mentally disordered and preclude them from receiving appropriate biologically-oriented care. Some contributors submitted proposals for changes to the definition (30%; κ=0.89). Others opposed inclusion of the disorder altogether (26%; κ=0.88), while no submission (κ=1) expressed support for inclusion. The WHO decided to retain bodily distress disorder as a diagnostic category6 and addressed concerns by requiring in the CDDG the presence of additional features, such as significant functional impairment.


Note: “Use of a diagnostic term that is closely associated with the differently conceptualized bodily distress syndrome5 was seen as problematic.”

Whilst it is welcomed that this specific concern has been acknowledged within this Letter to the Editor, I have drawn to the authors’ attention that WHO/ICD Revision has repeatedly failed to respond to requests to provide a rationale for its re-purposing of a diagnostic term that is already strongly associated with the Fink et al (2010) Bodily distress syndrome*, despite provision of examples from the literature clearly demonstrating that these two terms have been used interchangeably by researchers and practitioners, since 2007 [4].

The potential for confusion and conflation of these differently conceptualized disorder constructs was acknowledged by the WHO’s Dr Geoffrey Reed, in 2015. However, there has been no discussion of this potential in any of the S3DWG working group’s progress reports and field trial evaluations. If the WHO is not willing to reconsider and remedy this problem, there is the expectation that a rationale for going forward with the Bodily distress disorder term is provided for clinical and public stakeholders.

*Operationalized in Denmark and beyond, BDS is differently conceptualized to ICD-11’s BDD diagnostic construct: BDS has very different criteria/essential features, based on physical symptom patterns or clusters from organ systems; psychobehavioural responses to symptoms do not form part of the BDS criteria; BDS requires the symptoms to be “medically unexplained”; is inclusive of a different patient population to ICD-11’s BDD, and crucially, is considered by its authors to capture myalgic encephalomyelitis, chronic fatigue syndrome, IBS and fibromyalgia patients under a single, unifying BDS diagnosis.

As an unprocessed proposal is currently under review with the CSAC/MSAC committees I have requested that earlier submissions, which were marked as rejected in February 2019 with no adequate rationale for dismissing the concerns raised within them, are reconsidered and that the WHO responds to three specific concerns:

a) its re-purposing of a disorder term already in use interchangeably for a differently conceptualized disorder construct;

b) the potential difficulties of maintaining disorder construct integrity within and beyond ICD-11 and the implications for clinical utility, data reporting and statistical analysis;

c) the requirement for adding exclusions under BDD for Concept Title 8E49 Postviral fatigue syndrome and its inclusion terms, to mitigate confusion/conflation with the Fink et al (2007, 2010) Bodily distress syndrome.


Bodily distress disorder in SNOMED CT

The SNOMED CT Concept term SCTID: 723916001: Bodily distress disorder was added to the July 2017 release of the SNOMED CT International Edition.

SNOMED International’s classification leads confirmed that the term had been added by the team working on the SNOMED CT and ICD-11 MMS Mapping Project as “an exact match for the ICD-11 term, Bodily distress disorder.”

In ICD-11, Bodily distress disorder has specifiers for three degrees of severity: Mild BDD; Moderate BDD; and Severe BDD, which are each assigned a unique code and a discrete description/characterization text.

It was submitted that including the three ICD-11 BDD severities might help clinicians and coders distinguish between the SNOMED CT/ICD-11 Bodily distress disorder concept term and the similarly named, but differently conceptualized, Bodily distress syndrome (Fink et al 2010), which has two severities.

A request for addition of the three BDD severities was submitted and approved in early 2018 and Mild BDD; Moderate BDD; and Severe BDD were added as three discretely coded for Children concepts for the July 2018 release of the International Edition and subsequently absorbed into the various national editions.



The ICD-11 CDDG should not be confused with the ICD-11 PHC.

Since 2012, I have been reporting on the parallel development of the ICD-11 Primary Health Care (PHC) Guidelines for Diagnosis and Management of Mental Disorders (ICD-11 PHC).

The ICD-11 PHC is a revision of the Diagnostic and Management Guidelines for Mental Disorders in Primary Care: ICD-10 Chapter V Primary Care Version. 1996.

ICD-11 PHC is a clinical tool written in simpler language to assist non-mental health specialists in primary care settings and non medically trained health workers, and also intended for use in low resource settings and in low- to middle-income countries.

It comprises 27 mental disorders considered to be most clinically relevant in primary care and low resource settings. (It is a misnomer to refer to the ICD-11 PHC as the “Primary Care version of ICD-11” since it contains just 27 mental disorders and no general medical diseases or conditions.)

It is important to note that like the ICD-10 PHC, this revised diagnostic and management guideline won’t be mandatory for use by member states, although the WHO hopes this revised edition will have greater clinical utility than the ICD-10 PHC (1996).

The WHO intends to make the ICD-11 PHC publication, once completed, free to download by anyone. There is currently no date available for its projected finalization or release.

The revision is the responsibility of the WHO Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse advised by an external advisory group — the Primary Care Consultation Group (PCCG) which is chaired by Prof Sir David Goldberg*; Vice-chairs: Dr Michael Klinkman and WHO’s, Dr Geoffrey Reed.

*Prof Sir David Goldberg also chaired the working group for the development of ICD-10 PHC (1996). Dr Michael Klinkman is a GP who represents WONCA (World Organization of Family Doctors) and current convenor of WONCA’s International Classification Committee (WICC) that is responsible for the development and update of the WHO endorsed, ICPC-2 (International Classification of Primary Care).

The full draft texts for the 27 mental disorder categories proposed for inclusion in the ICD-11 PHC have not been made available for public scrutiny, but a number of progress papers, field trial evaluations and presentations have been published since 2010 [5-8].

25 of the 27 mental disorder categories proposed for inclusion in the ICD-11 PHC have equivalence with mental disorder classes within the core ICD-11’s Chapter 06.

ICD-11 PHC is proposed to include a disorder category called “Bodily stress syndrome (BSS)” which replaces ICD-10 PHC’s “F45 Unexplained somatic complaints/medically unexplained symptoms” and “F48 Neurasthenia” categories.

This proposed “Bodily stress syndrome (BSS)” diagnosis has been adapted from the Fink et al (2010) Bodily distress syndrome (BDS). “Bodily stress syndrome (BSS)” does not have direct equivalence to a diagnostic construct in the core ICD-11.

The ICD-11 PHC’s “Bodily stress syndrome (BSS)” requires at least 3 persistent, medically unexplained symptoms, over time, of cardio-respiratory, gastrointestinal, musculoskeletal, or general symptoms of tiredness and exhaustion, that result in significant distress or impairment.

Under exclusions and differential diagnoses for BSS, certain psychiatric and general medical diagnoses have to be excluded but CFS, ME; IBS; and FM appear not to be specified as exclusions. So this (non mandatory) 27 mental disorder guideline needs very close scrutiny.

For the mandatory core ICD-11 classification, the WHO is going forward with the differently conceptualized, Bodily distress disorder (BDD), which has close alignment with DSM-5’s Somatic symptom disorder.*

*See: Comparison of SSD, BDD, BDS, BSS in classification systems, Chapman & Dimmock, July 2018.


If ICD-11 PHC goes forward with its proposed BSS category, there will be all these diagnostic constructs in play:

Somatic symptom disorder (DSM-5; under Synonyms to BDD in the core ICD-11)
Bodily distress disorder (core ICD-11; SNOMED CT)
Bodily stress syndrome (ICD-11 PHC guideline for 27 mental disorders)
Bodily distress syndrome (Fink et al 2010, operationalized in Denmark and beyond)

plus the existing ICD-10 and SNOMED CT Somatoform disorders categories and their equivalents in ICPC-2.



1 Reed GM, Correia J, Esparza P, Saxena S, Maj M (2011). The WPA-WHO global survey of psychiatrists’ attitudes towards mental disorders classification. World Psychiatry, 10, 118–131.

2 Reed GM, First MB, Kogan CS, et al. Innovations and changes in the ICD-11 classification of mental, behavioural and neurodevelopmental disorders. World Psychiatry, 2019;18(1):3–19. doi:10.1002/wps.20611

3 Fuss J, Lemay K, Stein DJ, Briken P, Jakob R, Reed GM and Kogan CS. (2019). Public stakeholders’ comments on ICD‐11 chapters related to mental and sexual health. World Psychiatry, 18: 233-235.

4 Chapman S. Proposal and rationale for Deletion of the Entity Bodily distress disorder. Proposal submitted via ICD-11 Beta draft Proposal Mechanism, March 02, 2017.

5 T P Lam, D P Goldberg, A C Dowell, S Fortes, J K Mbatia, F A Minhas, M S Klinkman. Proposed new diagnoses of anxious depression and bodily stress syndrome in ICD-11-PHC: an international focus group study, Family Practice, Volume 30, Issue 1, February 2013, Pages 76–87,

6 MASTER PROTOCOL Depression, Anxiety and Somatic Symptoms in Global Primary Care Settings: A Field Study for the ICD-11-PHC Version 2 for WHO Research Ethics Review Committee.

Click to access WorldHealth14.pdf

7 Fortes, Sandra, Ziebold, Carolina, Reed, Geoffrey M, Robles-Garcia, Rebeca, Campos, Monica R, Reisdorfer, Emilene, Prado, Ricardo, Goldberg, David, Gask, Linda, & Mari, Jair J.. (2019). Studying ICD-11 Primary Health Care bodily stress syndrome in Brazil: do many functional disorders represent just one syndrome? Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry, 41(1), 15-21. Epub October 11, 2018.

8 Presentation: Rosendale, M (2017). MUS becomes Bodily Stress Syndrome in the ICD-11 for primary care



Comparison of Classification and Terminology Systems, Chapman & Dimmock, July 2018

Comparison of SSD, BDD, BDS, BSS in classification systems, Chapman & Dimmock, July 2018


Update on SNOMED CT and Bodily distress disorder

Post #341 Shortlink:

Update on SNOMED CT terminology system and inclusion of Bodily distress disorder

The July 2017 Release for SNOMED CT International Edition included an undefined Bodily distress disorder term, assigned as a subtype under Parent: Functional disorder.

SNOMED CT does not regulate which concepts should or should not be used in clinical records, but makes concepts available within its system in response to submissions for potential inclusion.

It was possible that the World Health Organization (WHO) had requested the addition of the Bodily distress disorder term for alignment between SNOMED CT and new ICD-11 concept terms [1].

But given the concerns about Bodily distress disorder (BDD) and Bodily distress syndrome (BDS), it was important to establish what the SNOMED International terminology managers understood by the term “BDD” and to also establish who had submitted the request for its addition.

Download a copy of the full update

PDF: Statement on SNOMED CT and Bodily distress disorder

1 Bodily distress disorder, ICD-11 MMS Release June 2018

2 SNOMED CT International Edition Release for July 2018 was published on the public SNOMED CT browser on July 31, 2018

Comparison of SSD, BDD, BDS, BSS in classification systems

Post #338 Shortlink:

The World Health Organization (WHO) released the next edition of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11) on June 18.

WHO news release.

ICD-11 for Mortality and Morbidity Statistics (ICD-11 MMS) version 2018 is an “advance preview” that will allow countries to plan for implementation, prepare translations and begin training health professionals.

No countries will be ready to transition from ICD-10 to ICD-11 for several years. The new edition is scheduled to be presented at the World Health Assembly (WHA) in May 2019 for adoption by Member States, but WHA endorsement won’t come into effect until January 1, 2022.

After that date, Member States can begin using the new edition for data reporting but there is no mandatory implementation date and for a period of time, the WHO will be collecting data recorded using both ICD-10 and the new ICD-11 code sets.

I’ll be posting key links and information on the release of this “advance preview” in future posts. In the meantime, here’s the current schedule:


Bodily distress disorder

For the main edition of ICD-11, most of ICD-10’s Somatoform disorders and Neurasthenia have been replaced with a single new diagnostic category called Bodily distress disorder [1].

The Bodily distress disorder term was added to the ICD-11 drafting platform in early 2012 and has been the only disorder construct under consideration for the main edition of ICD-11 [2][3].



We are still seeing a good deal of confusion between ICD-11’s defining of Bodily distress disorder (BDD) and Per Fink’s Bodily distress syndrome (BDS) disorder construct [4][5].

To assist stakeholders in navigating the complexities of nomenclature and classification, Dx Revision Watch and Mary Dimmock have prepared a document comparing the key features of:

DSM-5’s Somatic symptom disorder (SSD)

ICD-11’s Bodily distress disorder (BDD)

Fink et al. (2010) Bodily distress syndrome (BSD)

Bodily stress syndrome (BSS), as proposed for the ICD-11 PHC


You can download a copy of the comparison table and notes, here:

Comparison of SSD, BDD, BDS, BSS in classification systems

Version 1 | July 2018

Download PDF

Click to access comparison-of-ssd-bdd-bds-bss-in-classification-systems-v1.pdf



1 Creed F, Gureje O. Emerging themes in the revision of the classification of somatoform disorders. Int Rev Psychiatry. 2012 Dec;24(6):556-67. doi: 10.3109/09540261.2012.741063. [PMID: 23244611]

2 Gureje O, Reed GM. Bodily distress disorder in ICD-11: problems and prospects. World Psychiatry. 2016 Oct;15(3):291-292. doi: 10.1002/wps.20353. [PMID: 27717252]

3 ICD-11 for Mortality and Morbidity Statistics (ICD-11 MMS) 2018 Release, Version for preparing implementation. Accessed July 20, 2018

4 Fink P, Schröder A. One single diagnosis, bodily distress syndrome, succeeded to capture 10 diagnostic categories of functional somatic syndromes and somatoform disorders. J Psychosom Res. 2010 May;68(5):415-26. [PMID: 20403500]

5 Syndromes of bodily distress or functional somatic syndromes – Where are we heading. Lecture on the occasion of receiving the Alison Creed award 2017, Fink, Per. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, Volume 97, 127 – 130
Lecture slides:

Why is this proposal for the G93.3 legacy terms for ICD-11 so important?

Post #336 Shortlink:

A copy of this post in PDF format is available here

1 Why is this proposal for ICD-11 so important?

1.1 The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD) is the standard diagnostic classification of diseases for use in epidemiology, health management, clinical practice and reimbursement. ICD-10 has been translated into 43 languages and is used by WHO member states in over 100 countries.

It provides a common language for reporting and monitoring the incidence and prevalence of diseases and other health problems. This allows for global comparison and data sharing in a consistent, standardized way between hospitals, regions and countries and over periods of time.

ICD is used to report and summarize an episode of care after the event. Data recorded on many types of medical information and other records, including death certificates, provides the basis for analyses of national mortality and morbidity statistics by WHO member states, which are used to inform decision-makers and commissioners and to monitor health related spending.

Users include physicians, nurses, allied health care providers, researchers, health information managers and technology workers, coders, policy-makers and insurers [1].

1 World Health Organization

ICD-11 is an electronic product designed to be used in computerized health information systems and will link to other globally used clinical terminology systems, like SNOMED CT.

Inappropriate classification of the G93.3 “legacy” categories for ICD-11 will negatively influence perceptions of the disease and the clinical care that patients receive throughout the world ‒ with implications for service commissioning, the types of medical investigations and treatments that clinicians are prepared to consider and medical insurers prepared to fund, the provision of welfare benefits, social care, disability adaptations, education and workplace accommodations.

It is crucial that international organizations, their clinical and research allies and patient and advocate stakeholders take some time to review our proposal, register with the Beta draft and submit a considered response. Over 45 stakeholder organizations have already commented in support.

1.2 After four years of uncertainty, it’s important that the G93.3 “legacy” terms are included and appropriately classified for the initial 2018 release of ICD-11

Although revision of ICD-10 has been underway since 2007, the work group with responsibility for the G93.3 categories has yet to reach consensus over how these terms should be classified for the new edition. Since early 2013, there have been no proposals in the public version of the ICD-11 Beta draft for stakeholders to review, input into or comment on.

The terms were finally restored to the Beta draft on March 26, but with this caveat: “While the optimal place in the classification is still being identified, the entity has been put back to its original place in ICD.”

Evidently, the work group has not yet reached consensus (or if it has, has not reached consensus with the WHO classification experts and Joint Task Force, to which it reports).

1.3 Why is the timing so critical?

In order to present an initial version of ICD-11 to the World Health Assembly in May 2018, the classification will need to be finalized by the end of this year. For proposals to be considered for inclusion in the 2018 release, they were required to be submitted by a March 30 deadline.

That leaves us with this situation:

  • virtually no information about what the work group might be considering;
  • having missed the March 30 deadline, no indication of whether any proposals that might be released by the work group between now and the end of the year would be included in the initial 2018 release or rolled forward for consideration for inclusion in the 2019 release;
  • if no consensus has been reached before the end of the year, whether the classification would go forward with the “placeholder” listing or whether the terms would be omitted from the initial 2018 release.

Given the uncertainties, it was crucial we submit an alternative option. Stakeholders need to submit comments as soon as possible as it’s not clear whether there is a cut off point for consideration of comments on proposals that met the March 30 deadline.

1.4 Classification is important for protection against misdiagnosis and medical mismanagement

Prior to July 2015 (in the case of SNOMED CT) and prior to April 2016 (in the case of the UK Read Codes CTV3 primary care terminology system) both terminology systems had CFS, ME and their synonym terms dual classified under mental health disorders.

The WHO’s unmodified ICD-10 does not include CFS in the Tabular List, only in the Index. But in the Tabular List, ICD-10 includes several other coded terms which have been misapplied to CFS and ME patients, notably, the various ICD-10 Somatoform disorders categories and Fatigue syndrome, which is coded to Neurasthenia.

Misapplication of these codes has been used to deny patients access to appropriate medical care, to secondary referrals, investigations, emergency treatment, benefits, social care and disability services and in some cases, used to section patients for psychiatric treatment against their will.

Families are still being referred to social services and child protection agencies. Children and young people continue to be removed  from parental care because an existing diagnosis of CFS or ME has been contested or because they have been wrongly diagnosed with “Pervasive refusal syndrome” or as “school refusers,” or their parents accused of “Factitious disorder imposed on another.”

The Somatoform disorders, Neurasthenia and Fatigue syndrome are being replaced for ICD-11 with a new, single “Bodily distress disorder (BDD)” category which is close to the DSM-5 “Somatic symptom disorder (SSD).” BDD poses the same threat to CFS and ME patients as DSM-5’s SSD.

The Netherlands and Germany have witnessed the roll-out of guidelines and services for “MUS” and for “functional somatic syndromes.”

Already in use in Denmark, in clinics and research, Per Fink seeks to colonize Europe with the “Bodily distress syndrome” diagnostic construct, which subsumes and replaces CFS, ME, IBS and FM.

Last year, the Ministry of Science and Research, Hamburg, Germany, provided funding for EURONET-SOMA (European Network to improve diagnosis, treatment and health care for patients with persistent somatic symptoms) comprising a panel of 29 researchers from Denmark, the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, Latvia, Belgium, United Kingdom, Germany and Russia, to develop a joint research agenda and work towards a common understanding of the terminology, conceptualization and management of “persistent somatic symptoms” and for interdisciplinary agreement on a consistent diagnostic classification.

In the UK, “Medically unexplained symptoms (MUS)” and “Persistent physical symptoms (PPS)” services are proliferating. Funding is being made available for integrated IAPT (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies) services delivering CBT and other therapies for “MUS”; in some cases, bids are being invited specifically for developing IAPT CBT or CBT/GET for CFS patients. One NHS Trust had invited Per Fink and his colleagues over to the UK to train up local GPs in the TERM model.

In at least one part of the country, a specialised CFS service has been decommissioned in order to save money and put out to tender for a combined IAPT type service for CFS and chronic pain.

A new “Joint Commissioning Panel for Mental Health Guidance for commissioners of services for people with medically unexplained symptoms” guideline was published in February, in which CFS and ME are included as “functional somatic syndromes” [2].

2 Guidance for commissioners of services for people with medically unexplained symptoms February 2017

The push to commission “MUS” services is relentless. UK patients have reported having their CFS, ME diagnoses challenged by their practitioners and re-diagnosed with “MUS” or with a mental health disorder.

Patients need protection: the G93.3 “legacy” terms must be appropriately classified for ICD-11; safeguarded with reciprocal exclusions for “Fatigue” and “Bodily distress disorder” and not secondary parented under inappropriate chapters or parent classes

Extract from ICD-11 Beta Proposal Q & A Suzy Chapman, April 2017 version 2

Key links

For a summary of our proposal and links for submitting comment via the Beta draft see: A proposal for the ICD-10 G93.3 legacy terms for ICD-11: Part Two

A PDF Q & A for our proposal can be downloaded here

A copy of this post in PDF format is available here

International support for proposal for G93.3 legacy terms for ICD-11

Post #335 Shortlink:

The revision of the World Health Organization’s ICD-10 and development of ICD-11 was launched in 2007.

After several extensions to the timeline, WHO plans to present a version of ICD-11 at the World Health Assembly, in May 2018, with the intention of releasing the new edition at some point later that year. Endorsement will be sought later.

In order to be ready to present in May 2018, the final round of editing will need to have been completed by the end of 2017.

This November 2016 presentation by WHO’s Dr Robert Jakob sets out the targets and timelines, as they had stood last year.

There was a March 30 deadline for submission of proposals for consideration for inclusion in the 2018 version. Proposals received after that date are expected to be rolled forward for consideration for inclusion in the first annual maintenance and update revision of the new edition, in 2019.

On March 27, UK and US advocates, Suzy Chapman and Mary Dimmock, submitted a formal proposal via the ICD-11 Beta draft Proposal  Mechanism for the restructure of the ICD-10 G93.3 legacy categories: Postviral fatigue syndrome; Benign myalgic encephalomyelitis; and Chronic fatigue syndrome.

For a summary of the proposal see: A proposal for the ICD-10 G93.3 legacy terms for ICD-11: Part Two

International stakeholder support

There has been considerable support for the proposal, with over 540 “Agrees.” International patient, advocacy and research organizations and individual stakeholders have submitted more than 370 comments.

To date, these organizations have submitted responses:

Invest in ME Research
Hope 4 ME & Fibro Northern Ireland
The Devon ME Support Group
The Welsh Association of ME & CFS Support (WAMES)

Forward-ME  A group convened and chaired by the Countess of Mar. The members are:
ME Association
ME Research UK
Action for M.E.
reMEmber CFS
Blue Ribbon Awareness of ME (BRAME)
ME Trust
The 25% ME Group
Invest in ME

Open Medicine Foundation
NJ CFIDS organization
Solve ME/CFS Initiative
The Massachusetts CFIDS/ME & FM Association

The National ME/FM Action Network (Canada)
ME/FM Society of BC, Canada
Millions Missing Canada
The AQEM (Association québécoise de l’encéphalomyélite myalgique du Québec)

RME The Swedish Association for ME
Norges Myalgisk Encefalopati Forening (Norway)
The Belgian ME Association
The Danish ME Association
Groep ME Den Haag (Netherlands)
ME/cvs Vereniging, Nederland
Deutsche Gesellschaft für ME/CFS (Germany)
Suomen CFS-yhdistys (Finnish CFS Association)

The European ME Alliance (EMEA)  The alliance comprises:
Belgium ME/CFS Association
ME Foreningen (Denmark)
Suomen CFS-Yhdistys (Finland)
Finlands CFS-förbund
Fatigatio e.V. (Germany)
Het Alternatief (Netherlands)
Icelandic ME Association
The Irish ME Trust
Norges ME-forening (Norway)
Liga SFC (Spain)
Riksföreningen för ME-patienter (RME) (Sweden)
Verein ME/CFS Schweiz (Switzerland)
Invest in ME (UK)

ME/CFS Australia (SA)
ME/CFS and Lyme Association of WA Committee

New Zealand
NZMEAction, New Zealand

Other International
The Japan ME Association

Phoenix Rising. A patient-led and patient-run US 501(c)(3) non-profit organization which hosts the world’s largest internet forum for ME/CFS patients

Facebook groups and other groups
Race to Solve ME/CFS
M.E. Alliance
Global Advocates for ME
Friends for Honesty about ME
Support for the Followers of Dr Myhill’s Protocol

Viewing our proposal

We are inviting international patient and advocacy organizations and other stakeholders to review and comment on the proposal.

In order to view the proposal in the Proposal Mechanism you will first need to register with the Beta platform (you can register, if you wish, using an existing social media, Yahoo, Google or MS account).

Register for access here:

There is a short tutorial video on how to register, here:

When you are registered and logged in, go straight to this page to view and comment on our proposal:

For ease of access, we’ve put a copy of our Proposal and Rationale into a PDF, here:

Suzy Chapman, Mary Dimmock Proposal for ICD-11

If you are commenting on behalf of an organization, please state the organization’s name and in what capacity.

If you agree with our proposal, the “Agree” button is located directly under the blue Reference links.

If you would like to leave a comment on our proposal, the “add new comment” box is located right at the bottom of the web page, under the most recent comments.

Here is a Q & A addressing some of the questions raised in relation to our proposal:

Q & A version 1, April 2017

For a summary of our proposal see: A proposal for the ICD-10 G93.3 legacy terms for ICD-11: Part Two
For background to Part Two see: A proposal for the ICD-10 G93.3 legacy terms for ICD-11: Part One







Q and A for Proposal for the ICD-10 G93.3 legacy terms for ICD-11

Post #332 Shortlink:

To ensure that the ICD-10 G93.3 legacy categories are present and appropriately classified in ICD-11, U.S. advocate Mary Dimmock and I submitted a formal and fully referenced proposal on March 27, 2017.

Here is a Q & A addressing some of the questions raised in relation to our proposal:

Q & A version 1, April 2017

Proposal for the ICD-10 G93.3 legacy terms for ICD-11, submitted by Suzy Chapman and Mary Dimmock on March 27, 2017



Q & A version 1 covers:

Q1: Your proposal for ICD-11 does not recommend retiring CFS. Why is that?
Q2: Are PVFS, (Benign) ME and CFS classified the same across all versions of ICD-10?
Q3: How is ICD Revision proposing to classify the G93.3 legacy terms?
Q4: Is there any proposal to classify the terms under Mental or behavioural disorders?
Q5: Will ICD-11 look and function differently to ICD-10?
Q6: What is the implementation date for ICD-11?
Q7: Is ICD-11’s “Bodily distress disorder” the same as Fink’s “Bodily distress syndrome”?
Q8: Where can I view the Beta draft and comment on your proposal?


Our proposal recommends:

  • that the terms should be retained in the neurological chapter (Chapter 08: Diseases of the nervous system);
  • that the terms should be retained under the parent class: Other disorders of the nervous system;
  • that ME and CFS should each be assigned separate codes;
  • that PVFS is not an appropriate title term for ME to sit under (not all cases of ME are preceded by a virus).

We’ve also recommended:

  • reciprocal exclusions for “Bodily distress disorder” and for general Fatigue;
  • that the designation “Benign” should be dropped for ICD-11.

Our proposed restructure for ICD-11 looks like this:

Viewing our proposal

In order to view our Proposal in the Beta “Proposal Mechanism” you will first need to register with the Beta platform (this only takes a minute or two and you can register, if you wish, using an existing social media, Yahoo, Google or MS account).

Register for access here:

There is a WHO tutorial video on how to register, here:

Once you are registered and logged in, go straight to this page to view and comment on our Proposal:

For ease of access, we’ve put a copy of our Proposal and Rationale into a PDF, which you can download here:

Suzy Chapman, Mary Dimmock Proposal for ICD-11

We’re inviting patient and advocacy organizations and other stakeholders to review and comment on our Proposal.

Comments will only be accepted via the Beta “Proposal Mechanism” – so don’t send comments directly to ICD Revision.

If you are commenting on behalf of an organization, please state the organization’s name and in what capacity.

The Comment box for our proposal is located right at the bottom of the web page:

Click here for larger version

You won’t be able to edit or delete your comment once it’s been submitted ‒ so you may want to prepare a draft, first. You can include references to papers, reports etc in support of your comments but you won’t be able to upload files ‒ and it’s a plain text field only.

At the moment, it’s not clear what date comments on proposals will need to be received by in order to be taken into consideration for the version of ICD-11 that is scheduled for release in 2018. But we are recommending that comments are submitted within the next couple of weeks.

As well as commenting on our proposal, now that ICD Revision has restored the three terms to the draft, you may also comment on how the draft currently stands, here:

Click here for larger version

If you have an queries please contact Suzy Chapman via the Contact Form.

Here’s the PDF again Suzy Chapman, Mary Dimmock Proposal for ICD-11

And here’s the URL again for our proposal on the Beta draft Proposal Mechanism

For a good overview of ICD-11’s structure and functionality by NHS Digital click here


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