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An Independent View of DSM-5

An Independent View of DSM-5

Gary Greenberg, PhD is a psychotherapist, author, teacher, and historian of psychiatric diagnosis. His writings are characterized by penetrating insight, elegant wordsmithing, entertaining story telling, and a dig-deep, no-holds-barred search for underlying meaning. I rate his recently published "Manufacturing Depression" as one of the best books ever written on any psychiatric diagnosis.

I met Dr Greenberg about 3 months ago when he interviewed me as part of his intensive research for an article on DSM-5. That article has just appeared in the January edition of Wired, which can be accessed at: http://www.wired.com/magazine/2010/12/ff_dsmv/

The article illustrates the numerous deficiencies Dr Greenberg has uncovered in the DSM-5 process--its secrecy, defensiveness, excessive ambition, and disorganized execution. He shows how these have resulted in strange DSM-5 products-- particularly the proposals for a psychosis risk syndrome and complex dimensional measures. Anyone at all interested in DSM-5 and its impact on patients and society should definitely read Greenberg's piece (and weep).

I have been attempting to highlight these same themes, but Dr Greenberg does it more elegantly and comprehensively than I possibly could-- both because he is a much better writer and because he has interviewed and can assess all the major players on both sides of the debate. He combines the sensibilities of a diagnostic theorist with the skills of an investigative journalist.

Not all of his findings could be included in the Wired piece. Additional fascinating details about the APA handling of DSM-5 can be  found on Dr Greenberg's blogs at: www.garygreenbergonline.com

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