Sunday, January 20, 2013

DSM 5 will be mislabeling millions of people with a fake mental disorder that is unsupported by science

Bad News: DSM 5 Refuses to Correct Somatic Symptom Disorder
Medical illness will be mislabeled mental disorder

Published on January 16, 2013 by Allen J. Frances, M.D. in DSM5 in Distress

Many of you will have read a previous blog prepared by Suzy Chapman and me that contained alarming information about the new DSM 5 diagnosis 'Somatic Symptom Disorder.'

SSD is defined so over inclusively by DSM 5 that it will mislabel 1 in 6 people with cancer and heart disease; 1 in 4 with irritable bowel and fibromyalgia; and 1 in 14 who are not even medically ill.

I hoped to be able to influence the DSM 5 work group to correct this in two ways: 1) by suggesting improvements in the wording of the SSD criteria set that would reduce mislabeling; and 2) by letting them know how much opposition they would face from concerned professionals and an outraged public if DSM 5 failed to slam on the brakes while there was still time.

And many of you tried to help by making clear just how important this issue is in people's lives. The blog post got many tens of thousands of views, was reposted on 70 additional sites; was widely Tweeted and Facebooked, and elicited more than 300 extremely well informed and often passionate comments- unanimously in strong opposition.

We have failed and DSM 5 has failed us. For reasons that I can't begin to fathom, DSM 5 has decided to proceed on its mindless and irresponsible course. The sad result will be the mislabeling of potentially millions of people with a fake mental disorder that is unsupported by science and flies in the face of common sense.

I suggested ... Read more>>

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