May 17th, 2013 by John Carey
Just in time for its annual meeting in San Francisco this weekend, the American Psychiatric Association has announced the release today of the fifth edition of its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). This marks the first revision of this flagship guide to psychiatric diagnoses since 1994.
Because the DSM defines criteria for the diagnosis of mental health conditions and can influence health insurance coverage, changes to its classification system can sometimes be controversial. Below are some of the revisions included in the new edition:
- The DSM-5 expands the definition of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, allowing children up to age 12 who show symptoms to be diagnosed with ADHD (as opposed to age 7 in the previous edition)
- The DSM-5 eliminates Asperger’s syndrome as an independent category, placing it under the larger category of autism spectrum disorder
- The fifth edition adds new disorders for “hoarding” (allowing one’s home to fill up with possessions) and for “excoriation” (for persons who compulsively pick their skin). The DSM-5 also does away with the “bereavement exception,” so that persons mourning the death of a loved one can now be diagnosed with depression.
The DSM-5 will be available at the Hunter Health Professions Library, Wexler Library, and Hunter Silberman Building.
 Sun, Lena H. (2013, May 17). Psychiatry’s revamped DSM guidebook fuels debate. The Washington Post, http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/updates-to-psychiatrys-guidebook-change-criteria-for-adhd-autism/2013/05/16/dee4de0c-bd87-11e2-97d4-a479289a31f9_story.html?wprss&google_editors_picks=true.