Disorders and Treatment
- Mental Illness
- Bipolar Disorder
- Mood Disorders
- Borderline Personality
- Mental Health Diagnosis
- Mental Health Treatments
- Alternative Meds
- Case Studies
Controversial changes to DSM
There is at least one controversial change in the revised Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders fifth edition (DSM-5). The DSM provides the standard criteria for mental health diagnoses. The latest version of DSM, the first revisions since 1994, will include attenuated psychosis syndrome (APS) for the first time. This would identify those impaired by preliminary psychotic symptoms that do not meet the threshold for an existing diagnosis as having a psychotic disorder.
Original reason for including APS not valid
Trying to understand this new inclusion, researchers at Butler Hospital, Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital studied how APS applied in an outpatient clinic, and found reasons for concern. One of the original reasons for including APS was to help identify patients who are at high risk for transition to a psychotic disorder in the near future but not currently experiencing psychosis. During the team’s research, they did not find a single patient who would benefit from this scenario. Patients in that category met the criteria for another existing DSM disorder so the need for another DSM qualified mental health condition is not necessary.
Could be emotional consequences to diagnosis
Additionally these patients often suffer from other mental health conditions which may in fact explain the symptomology better than the APS diagnosis. Depression and anxiety were among those issues and they are definitely treated better on their own rather than as a psychotic symptom. The very real concern is that more patients will unnecessarily be labeled as “psychotic” and there could be social and emotional repercussions.
Could lead to inappropriate treatments
“APS has been a controversial topic because the introduction of this diagnosis would basically lower the threshold for diagnosing someone with a psychotic-type disorder. Making such diagnosis has serious implications because it could lead to inappropriate treatments such as antipsychotic medications that could pose more risks than benefits for these patients or increased stigma,” explained Gaudiano.
Source: MedicalNewsToday, Journal of Clinical Psychology
The information provided on the PsyWeb.com is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her health professional. This information is solely for informational and educational purposes. The publication of this information does not constitute the practice of medicine, and this information does not replace the advice of your physician or other health care provider. Neither the owners or employees of PsyWeb.com nor the author(s) of site content take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading this site. Always speak with your primary health care provider before engaging in any form of self treatment. Please see our Legal Statement for further information.