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DSM-IV

Literature DictionaryPostmodern Literature Dictionary
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (of Mental Disorders), fourth edition.  This manual is published by the American Psychiatric Association and is a list of mental disorders together with detailed definitions.  The pages describing a disorder typically list from 4 to 15 criteria and allow the diagnosis if a certain number of these criteria are met.  Diagnoses are differential, that is, the diagnostician reads through the criteria to find the best fit even though it is possible for a given person to fall within more than one very similar categories.  The DSM-IV guides the diagnostician in this differential effort by saying things such as "Panic Disorder is not diagnosed if the Panic Attacks are judged to be...." and this is so even if the patient would otherwise fit the criteria for a "panic disorder."  Many insurance companies require a DSM-IV diagnosis in order to pay for therapy.  These diagnoses are typically given by either psychiatrists or clinicial psychologists.  The DSM-IV was published in 1994.  The earlier editions of this manual were as follows: DSM-I 1952, DSM-II 1968, DSM-III 1979, DSM-III-R 1987.  DSM I and DSM II were quite short and non-specific in criteria compared to later editions, they also included a number of "disorders" that are no longer listed as forms of mental illness

 

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