TS and ADHD, Page 22

Proposed Possible Change Regarding Tourette’s Classification in DSM-V

I received an email inquiry at my website asking if I consider a possible revision in the classification of TS in DSM-V to be a vindication of my views denying that TS is an organic illness as opposed to a psychiatric one. The following is my response.

Thank you for your inquiry. If this change were to come to fruition, it would not only be long overdue but, in my estimation, attests to the fact that TS should never have been reclassified as a “neurological disorder” in the first place as explained in my essays on the subject.

For those unfamiliar with DSM, it stands for Diagnostic and Statistical Manual and has been published by the American Psychiatric Association since 1952. It is widely held to be authoritative by a range of players regarding psychiatric illnesses, including physicians and insurance companies. The manual has been updated several times and currently possible revisions are being considered for the fifth manual or DSM-V.

In DSM-IV, the current edition, TS is classified under the heading “Disorders Usually First Diagnosed in Infancy, Childhood or Adolescence.” Although that certainly describes TS accurately, it is rather a mealy-mouthed classification that is currently being considered for elimination; a change that I would wholeheartedly endorse. (TS is named for a French physician. Why not classify it under “Diseases Named for French Physicians”? Its present classification is little more edifying.)

Unfortunately, the DSM work group considering how to classify TS is recommending that it remain under its present classification. However, if the classification is discontinued, they are recommending it be assigned to “Anxiety and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders” exactly as I advocate and hold to be obvious. The Tourette Syndrome Association and other advocates for those with Tourette’s Syndrome have, of course, launched a lobbying counterattack to prevent the change. Click to continue:

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