November 6, 1981

DSM-III Case Book: A Learning Companion to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Third Edition)

Author Affiliations

Jackson Park Hospital Chicago


by Robert L. Spitzer et al, 386 pp, $29.95, paper $16, Washington, DC, American Psychiatric Association, 1981.

JAMA. 1981;246(18):2078. doi:10.1001/jama.1981.03320180068042

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This book provides clinical case vignettes of real patients with discussions of the diagnoses according to the criteria in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Third Edition) (DSM-III).

The first and second chapters, "Mental Disorders in Adults" and "Mental Disorders in Children and Adolescents," provide the reader with excellent descriptive clinical and historical information, enough to make a clear DSM-III diagnosis. There is coverage of aspects of physical medicine as they relate to differential diagnosis and to the production of behavioral abnormalities. The cases clearly differentiate between several previously "fuzzy" areas such as schizophrenia vs schizophreniform disorder, narcissistic disorder vs borderline personality, paranoia vs paranoid schizophrenia, schizotypal disorder vs schizoid personality vs schizophrenia, attention-deficit disorder without hyperactivity vs attention-deficit disorder with hyperactivity, and conduct disorder-socialized vs conduct disorder-undersocialized. In addition, there are cases that reflect the diagnostic progress of psychiatry, such as an adult case of residual attentiondeficit