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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Valerie E Mathis-Allen, MD (Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services)
Description: This is a concise guide to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (American Psychiatric Association, 2013), that explains the rationale for the changes made from DSM-IV-TR of 2000 to the DSM-5. Each diagnostic chapter begins with pointing out the revisions, provides interesting historical information, chronicles DSM changes with rationales, discusses each diagnostic section, criterion, subtypes, and specifiers, and ends with key points.
Purpose: The purpose, according to the authors, is to provide a user-friendly guide for fellow psychiatrists, psychologists, mental health practitioners, and other interested persons on how to incorporate DSM-5 into their practice and teach clinicians how to use the revised diagnostic criteria. The book is needed, and it meets the objectives.
Audience: It is intended to appeal to a wide audience of practicing psychiatrists, psychologists, psychiatric nurses, social workers, and mental health professionals who wish to know how to implement DSM-5 in their practices. The authors also expect that institutional audiences with solo and small practices, health maintenance organizations, insurance providers, hospitals, libraries, academic institutions, medical school courses, and residency training programs will find the guidebook helpful. They also note that students, residents, and office staff can benefit from the guidebook.
Features: The book covers the general organization of DSM-5, the diagnostic categories and criteria for the disorders. It gives a brief historical background of the rationale for the changes to DSM-5. After that, it discusses dimensional assessment measures and introduces an alternative model for personality disorders and evaluates proposed disorders under consideration. The best parts of the book are the explanations about the changes to DSM-5. The subject areas are well covered. The highlights and improvements to the DSM-5 are well documented. The innovative methods the book employs to deliver the information include the interesting and exciting background discussions that led to the changes in DSM-5, the DSM-5 diagnostic criteria for each diagnosis, key points that summarize the changes pertinent to each chapter and the listing of the diagnostic codes and various disorders at the beginning of the chapters. The only shortcoming is the lack of color.
Assessment: This is an excellent book. I found it to be user-friendly and a true guide to using the DSM-5.