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Commentary: Dimensional Diagnosis and <em>DSM-5</em>

J Clin Psychiatry 2011;72(10):1340
10.4088/JCP.11com07277

A dimensional point of view has been very well represented on the DSM-5 Personality and Personality Disorders Work Group, and the leaders of the Task Force have wanted to use personality disorders as a model for change, with the ultimate goal of making all diagnoses in psychiatry quantitative. Some of the possible problems of that approach are discussed in this commentary, including the difficulty of scale validation and determining whether assessment instruments have acceptable psychometrics. Zimmerman et al point out that complex scoring procedures for personality disorders may not even be necessary if, as in DSM-IV, one can score traits as absent, subclinical, or clinically diagnosable. While that is a rough procedure, so are the proposals under consideration for DSM-5.