Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM IV TR Fourth Edition. Image shot 2007. Exact date unknown.

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) is the federal agency that conducts and supports research that seeks to understand, treat, and prevent mental illness.

NIMH recently dismissed the long awaited DSM V manual as being unworthy of NIMH’s future research and stated it will take a new direction based on physically measurable aspects of the body.

DSM V (now called DSM-5) is scheduled for release on May 22nd 2013; it is the fifth edition of the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

Until NIMH gave it the boot, the DSM had been the undisputed “Bible” of psychiatry filled with official psychiatric disorders voted into existence by a show of hands of its professional members. More importantly, it lays out names of mental disorders that can be matched to recommended drugs.

By “discovering” more new disorders and more new drugs, psychiatrists and drug companies have been flourishing while patients taking these prescription “medicines” have been committing violent acts, mass murders, committing suicide or sinking into apathy.

On April 29, 2013, Dr. Thomas Insel, the director of the NIMH, had this to say about DSM V:

“Unlike our definitions of ischemic heart disease, lymphoma, or AIDS, the DSM diagnoses are based on a consensus about clusters of clinical symptoms, not any objective laboratory measure. In the rest of medicine, this would be equivalent to creating diagnostic systems based on the nature of chest pain or the quality of fever. Indeed, symptom-based diagnosis, once common in other areas of medicine, has been largely replaced in the past half century as we have understood that symptoms alone rarely indicate the best choice of treatment.”

Ischemia is an insufficient supply of blood to an organ, usually due to a blocked artery, lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system involving malignant tumors and AIDS is a disease caused by a virus that affects the immune system.

Clearly, Dr. Insel is calling psychiatry to task for its diagnosis techniques which are quite subjective and have no tests of any kind to parallel the physical type of laboratory testing done in standard medicine practice.

No psychiatrist can show by testing that “chemical imbalances in the brain” actually exist. They prescribe psychiatric drugs based on their supposed ability to observe the behavior or emotions of the person across the desk from them and match a drug to the disorder using the current DSM manual.

Dr. Insel states that “the NIMH will be re-orienting its research away from DSM categories.”

Category labels such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia have failed to help people achieve improved ability to feel good emotionally and enjoy life, hence the new direction by NIMH – the largest mental health research organization on earth with an annual budget approaching 1.5 billion dollars.

Here are some quotes from people commenting on the news articles and blog posts about the NIMH position on DSM V.

  • “Bravo, NIMH! The APA deserves to be shunned for their complete disregard for science and quality of care for those with mental disorders.”
  • “We ran into this DSM vagueness with an older doctor we saw for our son. We could not get any sort of causal explanation, but only symptom-ology. Good riddance, lets move on to something better.”
  • “What a refreshing development. The tyranny of the DSM is weakened. I will look forward to the vector from the NIMH”
  • “This work of Fiction, The DSM, has been presented as Fact for far too long and far too many people have suffered greatly as a result.”
  • “The day you find the “gene” or “brain component” that makes or controls trust, faith, honor, and creative inspiration the world, as we know, it will end. Let’s hope civilization as a whole becomes more aware of who and what they are before the “brain boys” take over and muck everybody up.”

It looks as though both public and professional sentiment as voiced by the National Institute of Mental Health has taken a big step forward in recognizing the failure of psychiatry as presented in the DSM V model.

http://www.nimh.nih.gov/about/director/2013/transforming-diagnosis.shtml

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/side-effects/201305/the-nimh-withdraws-support-dsm-5

http://www.technologyreview.com/view/514571/nimh-will-drop-widely-used-psychiatry-manual/

http://www.nimh.nih.gov/about/director/2013/transforming-diagnosis.shtml

http://www.policymic.com/articles/40063/national-institute-of-mental-health-forsakes-the-dsm-the-bible-of-psychiatry

http://mindhacks.com/2013/05/03/national-institute-of-mental-health-abandoning-the-dsm/#comment-61216