Contentious proposals for DSM-5

Changes to diagnoses of some mental illnesses are causing disquiet about the consequences for patients.

Disorder Change Rationale Reason for controversy
Autism spectrum disorder Combines multiple DSM-IV diagnoses into one; changes number of criteria needed for diagnosis Improved specificity of diagnosis Concerns about underdiagnosis, loss of eligibility for state support
Attenuated psychosis syndrome New diagnosis To identify young people at risk for later manifestation of psychotic disorder Concerns about overdiagnosis/ overmedication
Major depressive episode Removes “bereavement” exclusion Evidence does not support separating loss of loved one from other stressors Concerns about overdiagnosis/ overmedication
Mild neurocognitive disorder New diagnosis To facilitate earlier intervention for individuals in early stages of neurocognitive disorders Concerns about overdiagnosis/ overmedication
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