November 24, 2008

"The sausage-making of psychiatric care"

"The less you know about how mental health is defined, the better. Or perhaps it's the other way around."

In case you missed English professor Christopher Lane's excellent opinion piece in the L.A. Times last week, the Minneapolis Star Tribune ran it this Sunday. As the American Psychiatric Association gears up for DSM-V, we all need to keep it real when it comes to psychiatric diagnosis. Let's hope this media spotlight will encourage the APA to increase the transparency of the process and make sure only legitimate diagnoses get added to the manual.

The Star Tribune op-ed is online here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Or no diagnoses at all. Personally I think we have begun to label normal human behavior as "diseased" or "dysfunctional". Shyness has now become Social Anxiety Disorder and requires "treatment".

I agree wholeheartedly that the process needs to be more transparent. That is an excellent point.

I think it is also important to point out that some clinicians refuse to diagnose. That too is a legitimate option.