DSM-5 Round up: November #1

DSM-5 Round up: November #1

Post #207 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-2vW

Huffington Post Blog

David J. Kupfer, MD | Chair, DSM-5 Task Force | November 7, 2012

Field Trial Results Guide DSM Recommendations

Written with Helena C. Kraemer, Ph.D.

Two years ago this month, APA announced the start of field trials that would subject proposed diagnostic criteria for the future DSM-5 to rigorous, empirically sound evaluation across diverse clinical settings. And now, as the first comprehensive analyses of that effort are published, what’s clear is just how well the field trials did their job…

Full commentary

1 Boring Old Man


1 Boring Old Man | November 9, 2012

Side Effects

From quirky to serious, trends in psychology and psychiatry

by Christopher Lane, Ph.D.

The DSM-5 Field Trials’ Decidedly Mixed Results

Far from being a ringing endorsement, the field trials set off fresh alarm bells

Christopher Lane, Ph.D. | November 11, 2012

“What’s the chance that a second, equally expert diagnosis will agree with the first, making a particular diagnosis reliable?” asks David Kupfer, chair of the DSM-5 task force, of the decidedly mixed results of the DSM-5 field trials. First off, are you sure you really want to know?…

Full commentary


also here on Psychiatric Times (registration required):


You Can’t Turn a Sow’s Ear Into a Silk Purse

By Allen Frances, MD | November 11, 2012

In his recent Huffington Post piece titled Field Trial Results Guide DSM Recommendations,1 DSM-5 Task Force Chair Dr David Kupfer says, “What’s clear is just how well the field trials did their job.” This surprisingly optimistic claim has inspired these telling rejoinders from Mickey Nardo, MD, and Barney Carroll, MD, 2 of the best informed critics of DSM-5.

Dr Nardo first: “The absence of biological tests in psychiatry is unique in medicine and sentences the classification of mental disorders to endless controversy. In the 1970s, Dr Robert Spitzer proposed we use inter-rater reliability as a stand in for objective tests. His statistician colleagues developed a simple measure (called ‘kappa’) to indicate the level of diagnostic agreement corrected for chance. In 1974, Spitzer reported on 5 studies that clearly exposed the unreliability of DSM-II, the official diagnostic system at the time.

“To correct this problem and obtain the diagnostic agreement necessary for research studies, Spitzer then set about constructing sets of diagnostic criteria meant to tap overt signs and symptoms, rather than the more inferential mechanisms that informed DSM-II. He also developed structured clinical interviews that provided a uniform method of assessment. These approaches worked well to improve the poor kappas obtained using the free form approach of DSM-II.

“In 1980, Spitzer took the next big step of introducing the criterion based method of diagnosis into DSM-III. What had originated as a research tool now informed all clinical practice. It was an important milestone for psychiatry when DSM-III field testing showed that the system achieved good kappas. The new manual was an instant success throughout the mental health professions and brought a measure of objectivity to a field previously dominated by warring subjective opinions. Later, in 1994, DSM-IV was also able to demonstrate good kappas in its much more extensive field testing.

“The DSM-5 Task Force originally planned two sets of field trials, the second of which was meant to provide quality control to correct whatever weaknesses would be exposed in the first. But along the way, the field testing got far behind its schedule and the quality control step was quietly cancelled. No explanation was ever offered, but it seemed likely that DSM-5 was being rushed to press so that APA could reap publishing profits.

“Dr David Kupfer now wants us to believe that the recently published results of the DSM-5 field testing somehow serve to justify the inclusion in DSM 5 of extremely controversial and much feared changes. This is a terribly misleading claim. Independent of all the other criticisms of DSM-5 (and there are plenty), the poor results of the field trials must have been a major disappointment to the Task Force. Dr Kupfer is now making a desperate attempt to salvage the failed project by putting an unrealistically positive spin on its results.

“Our forty-year experience in reliability testing for DSM-II, the RDC, DSM-III, and DSM-IV makes clear what are acceptable and what are unacceptable kappa levels. There is no way of avoiding or cloaking the stark and troubling fact that the DSM-5 field trials produced remarkably low kappas—harking back to the bad old days of DSM-II.

[see http://1boringoldman.com/index.php/2012/10/31/humility-2/ ].

“Equally disturbing, three of the eight diagnoses tested at multiple centers had widely divergent kappa values at the different sites—hardly a vote for their reliability. Even worse, two major diagnostic categories [Major Depressive Disorder and Generalized Anxiety Disorder] performed terribly, in a range that is clearly unacceptable by anybody’s standard.

[see http://1boringoldman.com/index.php/2012/10/31/but-this-is-ridiculous/ ].

“Dr Kupfer has been forced to drastically lower our expectations in an effort to somehow justify the remarkably poor and scattered DSM-5 kappa results. There is, in fact, only one possible explanation for the results—the DSM-5 field trials were poorly designed and incompetently administered. Scientific integrity requires owning up to the defects of the study, rather than asking us to deviate from historical standards of what is considered acceptable reliability. It is not cricket to lower the target kappas after the study results fail to meet reasonable expectations.

“Diagnostic agreement is the bedrock of our system—a non-negotiable bottom line. The simple truth is that by historical standards, the DSM-5 field trials did not pass muster. Dr Kupfer can’t expect to turn this sow’s ear into a silk purse.”

Dr Carroll adds this: “The purpose of DSM-5 is to have criteria that can be used reliably across the country and around the world. The puzzling variability of results across the sites in the DSM-5 field trials is a major problem. Let’s take just one of many examples—for Bipolar I Disorder, the Mayo Clinic came in with a very good kappa value of 0.73 whereas the San Antonio site came in with a really lousy kappa of 0.27. You can’t just gloss over this gaping discrepancy by reporting a mean value. The inconsistencies across sites have nothing to do with the criteria tested—they are instead prima facie evidence of unacceptably poor execution of the study protocol. The inconsistent results prove that something clearly wasn’t right in how the study was done.

“The appropriate response is to go back to the drawing board by completing the originally planned quality control second stage of testing—rather than barreling ahead to premature publication and pretending that everything is just fine when it is not. The DSM-5 leaders have lowered the goal posts and are claiming a bogus sophistication for their field trials design as an excuse for its sloppy implementation. But a low kappa is a low kappa no matter how you try to disguise it. Dr Kupfer is putting lipstick on the pig.

“Many people experience a glazing of the eyes when the term kappa appears, but it’s really a simple idea. The kappa value tells us how far we have moved from completely random agreement (a kappa of 0) to completely perfect agreement (a kappa of 1.0). The low end of kappas that DSM-5 wants us to find acceptable are barely better than blind raters throwing random darts. If there is this much slop in the system when tested at academic centers, imagine how bad things will become in the real world of busy and less specialized clinical practice.

“Something isn’t right . . . and when something isn’t right in a matter as serious as psychiatric diagnosis the professional duty is to fix it. Having shirked this responsibility, APA deserves to fail in the business enterprise that it has made of DSM-5. If ever there was a clear conflict of interest, this is it.”

Thanks are due to Drs Nardo and Carroll. There can be no doubt that the DSM-5 Field Trials were a colossal waste of money, time, and effort. First off, they didn’t ask the most obvious and important question—What are the risks that DSM-5 will create millions of misidentified new ‘patients’ who would then be subjected to unnecessary treatment? Second, the results on the question it did ask (about diagnostic reliability) are so all over the map that they are completely uninterpretable. And to top it off, DSM-5 cancelled the quality control stage that might have cleaned up the mess.

It is almost certain that DSM-5 will be a dangerous contributor to our already existing problems of diagnostic inflation and inappropriate prescription of psychotropic drugs. The DSM-5 leadership is trying to put a brave face on its badly failed first stage of field testing and has offered no excuse or explanation for canceling its second and most crucial quality control stage. This field testing fiasco erases whatever was left of the credibility of DSM-5 and APA.


1. Kupfer DJ. Field trial results guide DSM recommendations. Huffington Post. November 7, 2012. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-j-kupfer-md/dsm-5_b_2083092.html . Accessed November 13, 2012.

Nature News Blog

DSM field trials inflame debate over psychiatric testing

05 Nov 2012 | 15:00 GMT | Posted by Heidi Ledford | Category: Health and medicine

As the latest revision of a key psychiatric tome nears completion, field trials of its diagnoses have prompted key changes to controversial diagnoses and sparked questions as to how such trials should be conducted…

Read on

Aging Well – News & Insight for Professionals in Geriatric Medicine

Dementia and DSM-5:

Changes, Cost, and Confusion

James Siberski, MS, CMC

Aging Well, Vol. 5 No. 6 P. 12

DSM-5 changes will require providers to learn the differences between major and minor neurocognitive disorders and to explain the differences and their significance to patients and their families.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), published by the American Psychiatric Association and used for diagnosis by mental health professionals in the United States, describes symptoms for all mental disorders. Its primary components are the diagnostic classifications, diagnostic criteria sets, and descriptive texts. DSM-I was initially approved in 1951 and published the following year. Since then it has been revised several times and resulted in DSM-II in 1968, DSM-III in 1980, DSM-III-R in 1987, DSM-IV in 1994, and the current version, DSM-IV-TR, in 2000. Historically, it has been both praised and criticized…

Full article

Health Care Renewal


Bernard Carroll, MD | November 03, 2012

…What lies ahead? Stakeholders are going to vote with their feet. DSM-5 is likely to be a footnote in the history of psychiatric classification. The APA will become even less relevant than it is today, much like the American Medical Association, which now commands the loyalty of maybe 30% of U.S. physicians….

Full commentary


APA finally posts DSM-5 Field Trials online and DSM-5 Round up

APA finally posts DSM-5 Field Trials online and DSM-5 Round up

Post #206 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-2vu

Three papers discussing the results of the DSM-5 field trials were posted online yesterday by the American Journal of Psychiatry. The papers describe the methods and results of the 23 diagnoses assessed during the field trials.

APA failed to publish field trial results during the life of the third and final public review and comment period.

Access to the abstracts is free but you will need subscriber or institution access for the full PDFs or cough up $$ for the papers. ($35 per paper for 24 hours’ access. Why have these reports not been published on the DSM-5 Development website? Many classes of stakeholder will be disenfranchised.)

The article states that criteria were tested in October 2010 through February 2012 by 279 clinicians at 11 U.S. and Canadian academic centers. A second set of data from small group practices and private practices is expected to be reported early next year (that is, after the finalized draft has gone to the publishers).

Proposed criteria are still under review and won’t be finalized until approved by APA Board of Trustees.

DSM-5 draft proposals for criteria and categories as issued for the third and final stakeholder review can be read here on the DSM-5 Development website.

Note that the draft is now frozen and criteria sets and manual texts subject to embargo until publication of the DSM-5 manual. Any revisions made by the Task Force and Work Groups since the third iteration was released in May, this year, won’t be reflected on the DSM-5 Development website.

Published yesterday in the American Journal of Psychiatry and at Psychiatry Online:

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Full text of article:

DSM-5 Field Trials Posted Online by AJP


Article 1 | October 30, 2012

Abstract: http://psychiatryonline.org/article.aspx?articleid=1387935

DSM-5 Field Trials in the United States and Canada, Part I: Study Design, Sampling Strategy, Implementation, and Analytic Approaches

Diana E. Clarke, Ph.D., M.Sc.; William E. Narrow, M.D., M.P.H.; Darrel A. Regier, M.D., M.P.H.; S. Janet Kuramoto, Ph.D., M.H.S.; David J. Kupfer, M.D.; Emily A. Kuhl, Ph.D.; Lisa Greiner, M.S.S.A.; Helena C. Kraemer, Ph.D.

Am J Psychiatry 2012;:. 10.1176/appi.ajp.2012.12070998

PDF for those with subscriber access: http://ajp.psychiatryonline.org/data/Journals/AJP/0/appi.ajp.2012.12070998.pdf

Article 2 | October 30, 2012

Abstract: http://psychiatryonline.org/article.aspx?articleid=1387906

DSM-5 Field Trials in the United States and Canada, Part II: Test-Retest Reliability of Selected Categorical Diagnoses

Darrel A. Regier, M.D., M.P.H.; William E. Narrow, M.D., M.P.H.; Diana E. Clarke, Ph.D., M.Sc.; Helena C. Kraemer, Ph.D.; S. Janet Kuramoto, Ph.D., M.H.S.; Emily A. Kuhl, Ph.D.; David J. Kupfer, M.D.

Am J Psychiatry 2012;:. 10.1176/appi.ajp.2012.12070999

PDF for those with subscriber access:

Article 3 | October 30, 2012

Abstract: http://psychiatryonline.org/article.aspx?articleid=1387907

DSM-5 Field Trials in the United States and Canada, Part III: Development and Reliability Testing of a Cross-Cutting Symptom Assessment for DSM-5

William E. Narrow, M.D., M.P.H.; Diana E. Clarke, Ph.D., M.Sc.; S. Janet Kuramoto, Ph.D., M.H.S.; Helena C. Kraemer, Ph.D.; David J. Kupfer, M.D.; Lisa Greiner, M.S.S.A.; Darrel A. Regier, M.D., M.P.H.

Am J Psychiatry 2012;:. 10.1176/appi.ajp.2012.12071000

PDF for those with subscriber access:


DSM5 in Distress
The DSM’s impact on mental health practice and research.

by Allen Frances, M.D.

DSM 5 Field Trials Discredits APA

You can’t turn a sow’s ear into a silk purse.

…According to the authors, 14 of the 23 disorders had “very good” or “good” reliability; 6 had questionable, but ‘acceptable’ levels; and just three had “unacceptable” rates. Sounds okay until you look at the actual data and discover that the cheerful words used by the DSM 5 leaders simply don’t fit their extremely disappointing results. The paper is a classic example of Orwellian ‘newspeak’…

Allen Frances, M.D. | August 30, 2012

Read full article here

Also on Huffington Post


1 Boring Old Man


1 Boring Old Man | October 30, 2012

Well, they finally published the results of the DSM-5 Field Trials. Here are the links to the abstracts and the main table of kappa values to look over…


DSM-5 Round up

Public Lecture St Mary’s College of Maryland


DSM-V: Social, Political, and Ethical Implications

November 2

3:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Cole Cinema, Campus Center

This presentation will describe the DSM-V, scheduled for publication in May 2013, and the controversy surrounding its development. Dr. Ancis will provide an overview of the newly proposed classification system and diagnoses.

It is imperative that those involved in using the DSM-V, or potentially impacted by the DSM, be duly informed. Questions associated with the DSM-V revision process; the empirical bases of proposed changes; social, legal, and political implications; and ethical and cultural considerations will be addressed.

Dr. Ancis will describe her involvement in a number of initiatives related to DSM-V proposals, including those of the Association of Women in Psychology and Counselors for Social Justice. She will also review concerns of major mental health organizations worldwide, such as the American Psychological Association, the American Counseling Association, and the British Psychological Society, and related divisions.

Dr. Ancis is currently a Professor of Counseling and Psychological Services at Georgia State University. She earned her Bachelors, Masters, and Ph.D from the University at Albany, State University of New York. Her major areas of interest are multicultural competency training, diversity attitudes, race and gender issues, education and career development, and legal system experiences.

Event Contact Info

Janet Kosarych-Coy

Email: jmkosarychcoy@smcm.edu

Phone: 2408954283

Website: Click to Visit

Location: Cole Cinema, Campus Center

18952 E. Fisher Rd

St. Mary’s City, MD 20686


Psychology Today

Side Effects

From quirky to serious, trends in psychology and psychiatry

The Tranquilizer Trap The scandal over benzodiazepines gets different emphasis in the UK and U.S.

Published on October 3, 2012 by Christopher Lane, Ph.D. in Side Effects

Anti-DSM Sentiment Rises in France Why French psychiatrists and psychoanalysts are opposed to the diagnostic manual  (French Stop DSM-5 Campaign)

Published on September 28, 2012 by Christopher Lane, Ph.D. in Side Effects

New York Times

Report Sees Less Impact in New Autism Definition

By BENEDICT CAREY | Published: October 2, 2012

Proposed changes to the official diagnosis of autism will not reduce the proportion of children found to have it as steeply as many have feared, scientists reported on Tuesday, in an analysis that contradicts several previous studies…


Medscape Medical News > Psychiatry

Controversial New Diagnosis in DSM-5 May Be Faulty

Pam Harrison | October 17, 2012

Attenuated psychosis syndrome (APS), a new and controversial diagnosis for potential inclusion in the upcoming Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), is questionable, new research suggests…

DSM-5 and Employment Law

In September, Douglas Hass (Franczet Radelet) published an article Could the American Psychiatric Association Cause You Headaches? The Dangerous Interaction between the DSM-5 and Employment Law:



Since its first publication in 1952, the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) has long served not only as the primary reference for mental health disorders for medical practitioners, but also as a primary authority for the legal community…

Full text in PDF format: Hass

Research Article


Research Article

The Effect of Draft DSM-V Criteria on Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Prevalence

Patrick S. Calhoun Ph.D.1,2,3,*,
Jeffrey S. Hertzberg B.A.3,
Angela C. Kirby M.S.3,
Michelle F. Dennis B.A.2,
Lauren P. Hair M.S.3,
Eric A. Dedert Ph.D.1,2,3,
Jean C. Beckham Ph.D.1,2,3
Article first published online: 26 OCT 2012

DOI: 10.1002/da.22012

© 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Journal of Psychosomatic Research

November 2012 Issue, Journal of Psychosomatic Research


Issue: Vol 73 | No. 5 | November 2012 | Pages 325-400


Predictive validity and clinical utility of DSM-5 Somatic Symptom Disorder – Comparison with DSM-IV somatoform disorders and additional criteria for consideration

Katharina Voigt
Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf and Schön Klinik Hamburg-Eilbek, Hamburg, Germany

Corresponding author at: Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Martinistr. 52, 20246 Hamburg, Germany. Tel.: +49 40 7410 54408; fax: +49 40 7410 54975.

Eileen Wollburg
Schön Klinik Bad Bramstedt, Bad Bramstedt, Germany

Nina Weinmann
Schön Klinik Bad Bramstedt, Bad Bramstedt, Germany

Annabel Herzog
Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf and Schön Klinik Hamburg-Eilbek, Hamburg, Germany

Björn Meyer
GAIA AG, Hamburg, Germany

Gernot Langs
Schön Klinik Bad Bramstedt, Bad Bramstedt, Germany

Bernd Löwe
Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf and Schön Klinik Hamburg-Eilbek, Hamburg, Germany

Received 3 July 2012; received in revised form 29 August 2012; accepted 30 August 2012; published online 24 September 2012.


Major changes to the diagnostic category of somatoform disorders are being proposed for DSM-5. The effect of e.g. the inclusion of psychological criteria (criterion B) on prevalence, predictive validity, and clinical utility of “Somatic Symptom Disorder” (SSD) remains unclear. A prospective study was conducted to compare current and new diagnostic approaches.

In a sample of N=456 psychosomatic inpatients (61% female, mean age=44.8±10.4years) diagnosed with somatoform, depressive and anxiety disorders, we investigated the current DSM-5 proposal (SSD) plus potential psychological criteria, somatic symptom severity, and health-related quality of life at admission and discharge.

N=259 patients were diagnosed with DSM-IV somatoform disorder (56.8%). With a threshold of 6 on the Whiteley Index to assess psychological criteria, the diagnosis of SSD was similarly frequent (51.8%, N=230). However, SSD was a more frequent diagnosis when we employed the recommended threshold of one subcriterion of criterion B. Patients diagnosed with only SSD but not with DSM-IV somatoform disorder showed greater psychological impairment. Both diagnoses similarly predicted physical functioning at discharge. Bodily weakness and somatic and psychological attributions at admission were among significant predictors of physical functioning at discharge. Reduction of health anxiety, bodily weakness, and body scanning significantly predicted an improvement of physical functioning.

Psychological symptoms enhance predictive validity and clinical utility of DSM-5 Somatic Symptom Disorder compared to DSM-IV somatoform disorders. The SSD diagnosis identifies more psychologically impaired patients than its DSM-IV precursor. The currently suggested diagnostic threshold for criterion B might increase the disorder’s prevalence.

Keywords: Somatoform disorder, Diagnosis, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Classification of diseases, Validation studies as topic

Ed: Note: Between publication of the second iteration of the DSM-5 draft proposals for public review and publication of the third set of draft proposals, the SSD “B type criteria” were reduced from the requirement to meet at least two from the “B type” criteria to at least one [1].

1] http://www.dsm5.org/ProposedRevision/Pages/proposedrevision.aspx?rid=368

Somatic Symptom Disorder Criteria

Two resign from DSM-5 Personality Disorders Work Group over “seriously flawed” proposals

Two resign from DSM-5 Personality Disorders Work Group over “seriously flawed” proposals

Post #191 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-2kN

Update at July 24, 2012: Additional reporting from Straight.com, Vancouver, on the resignations of two members of the DSM-5 Personality Disorders Work Group:

UBC prof emeritus John Livesley and Dutch expert quit DSM-V committee defining personality disorders

Charlie Smith | July 23, 2012

Update at July 16, 2012:

In the July issue of Clinical Psychology & Psychology there is an Editorial and two Commentaries around DSM-5 proposals for Personality and Personality Disorders.

Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy



No abstract is available for this article.

Personality Disorder Proposal for DSM-5: A Heroic and Innovative but Nevertheless Fundamentally Flawed Attempt to Improve DSM-IV

Roel Verheul

Article first published online: 12 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1002/cpp.1809


No abstract is available for this article.

DSM-5 Personality Disorders: Stop Before it is Too Late

Paul Emmelkamp and Mick Power

Article first published online: 3 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1002/cpp.1807


No abstract is available for this article.

Disorder in the Proposed DSM-5 Classification of Personality Disorders

W. John Livesley

Article first published online: 3 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1002/cpp.1808

Roel Verheul, Ph.D. and W. John Livesley, M.D., Ph.D. resigned as members of the DSM-5 Personality and Personality Disorders Work Group in April.

Dr Roel Verheul is CEO of de Viersprong, Netherlands Institute for Personality Disorders.

Dr. John Livesley is Professor Emeritus at the University of British Columbia.

Allen Frances, M.D. who chaired the DSM-IV Task Force blogs at DSM 5 in Distress. Drs Verheul and Livesley have written to Dr Frances setting out their concerns for what they believe to be “seriously flawed proposals” and “a truly stunning disregard for evidence.”

DSM5 in Distress
The DSM’s impact on mental health practice and research.

by Allen Frances, M.D.

Two Who Resigned From DSM-5 Explain Why
They spell out the defects in the personality section

Allen Frances, M.D. | July 11, 2012

Roel Verheul and John Livesley both felt compelled to resign from the DSM-5 Personality Disorders Work Group. Here is an email from them describing what went wrong in the preparation of this section:

“…Regrettably, the Work Group has been unable to capitalize on the opportunity and has advanced a proposal that is seriously flawed. It has also demonstrated an inability to respond to constructive feedback both from within the Work Group and from the many experts in the field who have communicated their concerns directly and indirectly. We also regret the need to resign because we were the only International members of the Work Group which is now without representation from outside the US…”

“…Early on in the DSM-5 process, we developed major concerns about the Work Group’s mode of working and its emerging recommendations that we communicated to the Work Group and Task Force… We considered the current proposal to be fundamentally flawed and decided that it would be wrong of us to appear to collude with it any longer…As we see it, there are two major problems with the proposal…”

Read full article here

Proposals for the DSM-5 Personality Disorders as issued for the third and final stakeholder review can be read here on the DSM-5 Development site.

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