June 1983

Use of DSM-III Criteria

Author Affiliations

Research Assessment and Training Unit Department of Psychiatry College of Physicians & Surgeons of Columbia University 722 W 168th St New York, NY 10032

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1983;40(6):700. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1983.04390010110019

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To the Editor.—At a recent meeting a well-known psychiatrist stated that "American journals will not publish articles based on studies which have not used DSM-III criteria." When questioned regarding the validity of the assertion, he amended it to indicate that this would probably be the case in the future.

I hope no journal will adopt such a policy. To do so would fulfill one of the prophecies of those who fear that adoption of specified criteria in DSM-III would result in "premature closure" in the classification of the mental disorders.

Investigators should of course be very explicit regarding the criteria by which they select or describe their samples. Whenever appropriate for the study, some available set of criteria should be used. Often DSM-III will be applicable. In other studies, it may be desirable to describe the sample by DSM-III as well as by other diagnostic criteria. However, there are

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