The Original Miss Diagnosis!
Welcome to my page. I have been fighting against misdiagnosis in the soft sciences since 1998 and continue to do so because misdiagnosis harms humans. I am the official, original, and one-and-only Miss Diagnosis!
Here's all I ask of my readers and my fellow professionals:
1) Remain skeptical (the first concept we learned in Psych 101).
2) Never forget to forward the null hypothesis (maybe it's not ADHD... maybe the kid is bored?).
3) Always remember education and psychology are pretty soft, um, sciences.
4) Have the courage and ethics to speak out against injustices.
5) Remember that misdiagnosis harms humans and our goal is to help humans.
6) Always remember, to help (special education, medications, therapy, etc.) is not always to help.
7) Ask great questions and think
There's a renewed sense of urgency in 2014... Misdiagnoses appear to be skyrocketing. APA and CDC keep inventing new conditions. Apparently everyone is a willing participant. In the past couple of years it looked like there was an opportunity for optimism as APA's own Division 32 (Humanists) tried to overthrow the new DSM-5 (to no avail) and NIMH actually threw out the DSM! On one hand, it seems millions are finally starting to get it...
But there was a big conference and NASP apparently gave up on their Rights Without Labels (RWOL) Position Paper. Everyone got together and - through consensus - agreed that, even though they don't know what it is or how to measure it, SLD must exist! CDC is getting more involved and now considers SLD to be a developmental disability. Parents and their children are lining up for their new medications to address their new invisible DSM and special education disorders. In the schools, everyone who reaches RtI Level III is considered disabled. Millions of dollars are being granted to bring "mental health" into the schools.
And there's much, much more. For example, everyone who returns from war is found to have a PTSD (in real language, that means they just suffered through some horrendous situations and as expected, those experiences affected them in some profoundly negative ways). The real solution would be to... quit inventing wars to make money. People suffer in war... it's not a disability, it's a fact. Providing medications and therapy is merely treating the symptoms, not the problem.
This is not an "antipsychiatry" site. This is a humanistic and pro-science site. In Real Language (IRL), let's use science to help humans - not invent a DSM based on "consensus." (and, um, more). That's it, it's that simple.
I'll be writing more when I'm in a better mood...
New Project Coming Soon!
(Monday, December 12th, 2016) New project coming soon!
(Friday, March 11th, 2016) I am often asked to perform observations. It usually goes something like this: "Miss D, could you perform an observation?" And then I say, "Yes, of course I will be happy to."
Why do we in the social sciences perform observations? Because that's what we do.
But I'm excited to share with you the results of my most recent observations related to a very familiar subject, loading the school staff up with guns.
In the news this week was the headline, Folsom Cordova Unified reveals policy letting some have guns on campus(The Sacramento Bee). Visitors to the XP site will not be shocked by this headline and this, um, trend of arming the staff has been in the news for a long time. In fact, go to your favorite search engine and type in the term, "school district to arm teachers." 8,690,000 results! Wow!
Here is my brief summary of the observed process:
Within the context of the current zeitgeist and at this point in history, a political decision (to arm the teachers), based on a belief (um, "common sense?"), is made by a person with power (The Great Person). Mental health is not consulted regarding this political decision. Everything proceeds for a period of time (you know, Everything Is) - until the shooting occurs. Then mental health is called in to apply bandaids (trying to make the survivors feel better). And then mental health is, uh, blamed for the shooting. It ends up being a very convenient process for the person(s) in power.
The two obvious misdiagnosis: 1. misusing mental health to treat a political problem; and 2. incorrectly blaming mental health for the shooting instead of who really should be blamed.
You already knew that of course... you just didn't have the courage to say it did you?
Remember that whenever anything goes wrong, just blame mental health. It's convenient and a lot easier than finding real solutions to the real problem.
Have a great day!
aturday, February 20th, 2016, Miss D) In case you forget, Miss D likes to often remind her fans, at least once per year, that "Specific Learning Disability" (SLD) is an invented legal and political term... it's not a, you know, real thing. There certainly is not any sort of scientific or psychological basis for the term. Public schools are legally required to call your kid learning disabled when the educational system doesn't work ("Don't blame us, we're gonna blame your kid's brain... but not to worry, we'll give him or her some extra help with that math homework and by doing so we'll be documenting that we're providing FAPE so we're legally covered when we all go off to court, baby"). Think about that for a second - these lawyers are almost like geniuses!
Here's the legal definition: "Specific learning disability (34 C.F.R. §§300.7 and 300.541) means a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or to do mathematical calculations, including conditions such as perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia. The term does not include learning problems that are primarily the result of visual, hearing, or motor disabilities, of mental retardation, of emotional disturbance, or of environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage."
PTSD vs. PTS, um, D...
(Sunday, November 1st, 2015) New conditions keep being invented faster than Miss D can keep up with! Miss D has always been interested when new conditions are legislated into existence and she is equally interested when new conditions are, um, invented through court decisions. Here's another one for you to consider...
U.S. District Judge Michael W. Fitzgerald [apparently] ruled that students who experience traumatic events while growing up in poor turbulent neighborhoods could be considered disabled. However, there is much more to this case and it is still evolving. Read the full NPR article, Ruling in Compton Schools Case: Trauma Could Cause Disability.
As always, Miss D has a few thoughts, questions, and comments:
1. Students who experience trauma already are, or can be, considered disordered - it's in the DSM and called Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Mental health services already are readily available for students with PTSD.
2. Miss D does agree that students should not be expelled from school merely because they've experienced tough times (i.e., because they are poor, a minority, and/or live in a high-crime area). See the School-To-Prison-Pipeline.
3. Apparently this movement hopes to call this brand new disability a Post Traumatic Shock Disability (as opposed to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder). IRL what does this mean? Think special education and Section 504. One word makes a huge difference.
Where is this "movement" coming from? As always, we need to follow the money. Let's follow the link from NPR's article and check out the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN):
Established by Congress in 2000, the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) brings a singular and comprehensive focus to childhood trauma. NCTSN’s collaboration of frontline providers, researchers, and families is committed to raising the standard of care while increasing access to services. Combining knowledge of child development, expertise in the full range of child traumatic experiences, and dedication to evidence-based practices, the NCTSN changes the course of children’s lives by changing the course of their care... The Network is funded by the Center for Mental Health Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, US Department of Health and Human Services through a congressional initiative: the Donald J. Cohen National Child Traumatic Stress Initiative. As of November 2015 the Network comprises 79 funded members. Affiliate members—sites that were formerly funded—and individuals currently or previously associated with those sites continue to be active in the Network as affiliates. There are 47 Organized Affiliates and 72 Individual Affiliates."
So with all the funding provided for mental health in 2000 by You-Know-Who, we knew we'd be getting more mental health, right? Apparently that's what you've all been asking for. Now we're gonna add another 25% of the population to the disabled category? And we're gonna call it PTSD instead of PTSD? And if you live in a high crime area, if you're poor, and/if you are a minority, you will qualify because you know, insurance (the taxpayers) will cover it.
Miss D continues to think there are plenty of risks and adverse outcomes when humans are misdiagnosed with invented conditions. On one hand, it's nice that money is made available for therapists to "help" students who are poor, live in a high-crime area, and/or are a minority. On the other hand, those are not mental health conditions. Honest question: do you really believe you are "crazy" just because you happen to live in a high-crime area, are poor, or are a minority? You-Know-Who thinks you are.
Be careful what you ask for. If you build it, they will come.
MORON AB 1369...
(Updated Sunday, November 1st, 2015) Miss D had tried to warn you previously, but this bill was passed anyway. Penned by California Democratic Assemblymember Jim Frazier,* apparently under pressure from [only] 6,500 parents and one or more advocacy groups, there seems to be a few issues related to the recent passage of AB 1369...
- Some students diagnosed or misdiagnosed with dyslexia will also be found to have a learning disability.
- Some students diagnosed or misdiagnosed with dyslexia will also be found to have other health impairments.
- Some students diagnosed or misdiagnosed with dyslexia will also be found eligible for 504.
- Some students diagnosed or misdiagnosed with dyslexia will be served in general education and their teacher will be required to "Teach Dyslexia."
- Some students diagnosed or misdiagnosed with dyslexia will be diagnosed or misdiagnosed by outside agencies, "advocates," or other individual and will [be deemed to] require "Vision Therapy," "filters," and more, possibly paid for by the taxpayers. In one recent dyslexia case, the assessment cost the parents $500, it was approximately $50 per week for the, um ["required"] "vision therapy," I'm not sure how much the special filters, paper, pencil, and glasses cost. The parent was happy to pay... but now that this bill has passed, I'm predicting there will be a push for the schools (i.e., you, the taxpayer) to pay. Just a guess...
- Some or many or most students diagnosed or misdiagnosed with dyslexia will have been misdiagnosed one way or another.
- IDEIA only had four major changes, one of which was that [eligibility/placement] decisions not be made through "screenings," so after all the kindergarteners are screened, then comprehensive team assessment will be required for all of the 100 kindergarteners at each site who couldn't draw a circle or determine if two words sounded similar or different.
- There are many issues and unanswered question related to the [validity] of assessment of dyslexia specifically related to ELL populations (and everyone else in general).
- My professional organization, the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), encourages school psychologists to not use the term, "dyslexia," because it means so many different things to so many different people, but then NASP can't agree on what LD is either; neither can APA!
- If it's language-based, phonological processing, then the speech therapist should assess dyslexia.
- If it's, um, medical, then the nurse should assess.
- If it's educational, then the special education teacher should assess. One site I visited recommended the [government-sponsored] DIBELs to assess! Aaaargh.
- If it's a learning disability, then I guess the school psychologist will assess.
- Probably we'll all test: comprehensive IEP team evaluations for 100 kindergarteners at each site every year (this is your taxpayer dollars at work). Note: although every school, district, and state vary, a comprehensive IEP team evaluation will cost the taxpayers (you) approximately $5000! Now we're gonna test >20% of the population yearly just for dyslexia? Good luck with that!
- The existing definition of SLD is, um, abstract enough without the governor up and reinventing the definition with one fell swoop of the pen just because 6500 advocates wrote a letter. Dyslexia was already in the previous definition. I always remind everyone how these "disabilities" are political, practical, or legal - not educational or scientific.
- School boards and teacher unions are in agreement on this topic (both are against it) - how often do school boards and teacher unions agree on anything?
- I'm wondering if there are any districts/SELPAs in the state who will refuse to comply with this new law. Hopefully it will go to the courts and stay there for a long time.
- Quite simply stated, there are many rea$ons why this bill has - happened.
You, the visitor, should be aware of this "grassroots movement" because it is soon coming to your state. Dyslexia testing has already come to New Jersey, California, and I think Iowa. It seems some of this infection is spreading out of Texas (since 1985) and Kentucky (I'll do more investigating and will get back with you on that one). It seems Dyslexic Advantage is butthurt that school personnel continuously tell parents and their advocates that, "We do not use the term, dyslexia." Why do we say that? Because we don't use the term, dyslexia, that's why! Either way, Dyslexic Advantage would very much like you to send them money.
Decoding Dyslexia also has a stake in this: "Educate, Advocate, Legislate." You know what that means... call the kid dyslexic or else we're gonna have 1000 meetings and we'll see you in court.
Get ready: this new legislation is coming soon to your state. Count on it.
Why should you care? Well, as if special education was not already over serving, over identifying, and misdiagnosing your children with invented disabilities, we're now going to add another 10-16% of the population to special education and there will be a lot more people making even more money off of you in this new money grab.
VISION THERAPY: Dyslexia affects the ability to sound out letters, not to see them. Pediatricians and ophthalmologists do not endorse vision therapy for treating learning and attention issues. There are decades of research that shows vision therapy does not work! Check out what the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology says about this topic.
ONLINE SCREENER! You can take the Dyslexia Test online for FREE, then print out the results, take it to your school, and viola! Instant services for your self-diagnosed dyslexic child. While you're at Lexercise, you can of course send them money for online therapy and more!
According to Decoding Dyslexia, "The DSM-5 uses the term Specific Learning Disability, and then requires a second code to specify the nature of the disability. One of three options is to code 'with impairment in reading.' That is the preferred way to use the DSM-5, however, it specifically states in that same section:
'Dyslexia is an alternative term used to refer to a pattern of learning difficulties characterized by problems with accurate or fluent word recognition, poor decoding, and poor spelling abilities (p.67, DSM-5).'
Dyslexia is an acceptable, equivalent, alternative name for the same condition... Dyslexia has not been weakened or gone away in the DSM-5."
So ultimately, if you, the reader, ignore the million$ of dollars involved, this is all much ado about nothing: you call it dyslexia, I call it a learning disability, except now you're gonna make me call it dyslexia - and there ain't much research supporting either construct.
*To contact Assemblymember Jim Frazier, visit his website at http://www.asmdc.org/members/a11/ or call his District Offices at 707-399-3011 or 925-513-0411.
Maybe I'll be adding more links and more information - maybe not. I'm depressed enough already.
In the meantime, have a great day if you can!
Click here to contact Miss Diagnosis!
Top 10 Reasons Johnnie Isn't Paying Attention...
TOP 10 REASONS JOHNNY ISN'T PAYING ATTENTION...
(Monday, September 7th, 2015) Every year throughout the nation, hundreds of thousands of special education and psychological referrals are forwarded related to attention. It is reported he fidgets, can't sit still, and just won't [can't] remain on task.
- He's only 5.
- He doesn't like your three-hour, awe-inspiring lectures.
- He doesn't like your homework.
- He doesn't like your attitude.
- He doesn't like your dress.
- He doesn't like your discipline techniques or your scowling.
- He would rather be playing basketball.
- He doesn't like you.
- He's mad.
- He's a boy.
What do you want me to do about it?
If you really want to [continue to] believe there is something wrong with Johnny -- that he must have some kind of attention "problem" that requires some sort of, um, medical intervention (you know, meds), well, don't send him to me. Send him to the school nurse.
Otherwise, have a great day!
Click here to contact Miss Diagnosis! l
How To Obtain Mental Health Services
Everyone's always complaining, "There's no mental health services!" XP begs to differ. There are hundreds of ways to end up in the mental heath system in the schools. I assure you it isn't that difficult... in fact, it's simple!
The list to the left gives students a few hints on how to choose to enter the mental health system. It will help if you are a minority, poor, male, and covered by insurance.
President Obama has made available millions of dollars to bring mental health to you.
All any student has to do is choose any of the items listed (for example, don't complete your homework) and before you know it, an Intervention Specialist with his or her AA degree will be right there for you. You will receive anger management class, your parents will be signed up for parenting class, you will receive your ADHD diagnosis and be placed on a schedule of medications, you will begin receiving weekly therapy sessions, and of course, you will have officially entered the mental health system.
Good luck with that.
In The Spotlight...
(Friday, June 12th, 2015 @ 8:30 am PST) If you haven't heard about this proposed legislation, I would like to share some information here so you can make an informed decision.
From KBIS: "This new bill would require all kindergarten to third-grade students to be screened annually for learning disabilities, specifically for dyslexia."
Everyone opposes this bill except - surprise - those who are hoping to make a lot of money from it. For the record, Miss D is strongly opposed to this new proposed bill. If we (the schools) start screening all K-3 students for this imaginary, um, "condition," probably about 90% will qualify. What is "dyslexia?" In Real Language (IRL), it means "has difficulties with writing." Guess what... almost all kindergartners have a hard time with writing.
These dyslexia advocates are seemingly just as wild-eyed as the ADHD, Aspergers, autism, and other "advocates." What does "advocate" mean In Real Language? It means, "I'm here to make money." You may be skeptical (and I hope you are). Let me give you an example. Here's how an "advocate" will make money if this bill becomes law: Not only will the advocates go all over the state giving "inservices," "trainings," and instantly assuming the role of "experts," but they will offer you online educational "opportunities" for only $2000 so you can become "certified" in, um, recognizing "dyslexia" (i.e., you will become "trained" to recognize kindergarteners who are struggling in the initial stages of learning their ABCs).
This is all about a parent-led grassroots movement FOR dyslexia (and against the "evil" public schools). Read the agenda of Decoding Dyslexia. Don't listen to me - they have their agenda published right there on their page for the whole world to see. They're hoping to make a lot of money - whoops, I mean they're hoping to, uh, "help" a lot of students.
To help or not to help? That remains the existential question. What is your definition of "help?" Do you think it will "help" to send 90% of all kindergarteners off to [a lifetime of] special education because s/he, um, takes awhile to learn the ABC's? For the record, school psychologists are not in favor of this bill... it is being pushed by agencies and advocates outside of the schools.
Click here to contact Miss Diagnosis!
URGENT: Consumer Alert!
The School-To-Prison Pipeline is well-documented and has been around for a long time but we can no longer ignore the less known School-To-Mental Health Pipeline (Asbridge, 2014), which has also been around for quite awhile but no one ever seems to acknowledge it or talk about it. The STMHP, simply stated, is: when thousands of students every day go off to school and come home with a psychiatric/mental health/special education diagnosis.
Parents, when you go off to work, do get sent to therapist if you're having a bad day? Do you get the ADHD diagnosis and a lifetime prescription for meds if you're a bit distracted in the afternoon? No, of course not - that's not the way the real world works... but that's how the make pretend world of education works.
It's okay if the adults at school work cooperatively with your child toward his/her goals, it's okay if the adults at school help your son/daughter get through a difficult afternoon. But if/when the school wants to start calling your child a bunch of bad names (like disturbed, disabled, disordered, impaired, etc.), just say, "No, thank you!" Your child should go to school to receive an education...
The School-To-Mental Health Pipeline is © 2014-21 by Donald J. Asbridge, Ed.S. All rights reserved.
Less Is More
The next chapter in educational history officially begins with PBIS and AB 420. PBIS apparently is behavioral rocket science, requiring three to five years for school personnel to learn to implement it. With the school, district, or outside behavioral expert in charge, thousands of positive and nondiscriminatory "interventions" will be provided (IRL that means more referrals to the counselor or school psychologist). Send me your tired, your weak, your poor...
There is one part of PBIS Miss Diagnosis can fully support: the humanistic backbone, the founding principles of PBIS, which are Safety, Responsibility and Respect. Why not just leave it at that? We don't need a 5000-page procedural manual, 5000 new interventions, and three years of trainings and organizational meetings to, um, you know, provide job security and a lot of money for the behaviorists -- let's just be safe, responsible, and respectful in the schools. If, starting tomorrow, everyone in the schools was safe, responsible, and respectful every day, 95% of the problems in education [and probably society] would instantly disappear.
So ultimately, Miss Diagnosis is 100% for 1% of PBIS. Safety, Responsibility, and Respect are all we really need. Let's start there.
Less is More.
Thinking Is Encouraged & Allowed...
Miss D thinks people think and thinking can be a good thing when you think about it! This may sound like a silly notion, but behaviorists don't think you think; they call that activity in your brain, um, "automaticity." Behaviorists such as Skinner, think thinking (and a few other pesky related concepts like freedom, dignity, respect, choice, etc.) are just roadblocks to their opportunities to make money and culturally engineer your environment. RtI and PBIS are current behavioral approaches used in the schools. Think twice before letting the behaviorists culturally engineer you and your child into their version of utopia.
I'd Be Laughing If I Wasn't Crying...
Unbelievable & Momentous Shocking Admissions...
(Sunday, July 27th, 2014) Are psychiatry and clinical mental health finally coming clean? Shocking admissions from the field, as reported by Lauren F. Friedman in Business Insider on July 23rd, 2014, include... drugs have been proven no more effective than placebos (yet still prescribed)... past research based on serendipity, not science... mental illness described as "mysterious" (admitting they have no idea what it really is)... and more. None of this is shocking or new to XP's regular visitors. But is there a cover-up starting now? With these admissions, huge amounts of money have been granted for more [and this time promised to be better] research, this time based on science... more medications are coming our way (and this time promised they'll work better]... Will there be a class-action lawsuit? What about the millions of people (20% of the American population) who have been given a bogus DSM diagnosis and prescribed what the field knew to be ineffective medications in order to make money? There are lots of questions. Don't let this story get forgotten in the midst of new promises. XP is mad as hell and you should be too. See mah2 for the specifics.
From Left Field...
(Monday, April 21st, 2014) Just in case you think I'm, um, sometimes out in left field, you might be right, but sometimes the left fielder is the one who saves the game.
In 1984 I entered graduate school and took my very first class in school psychology. The course was pretty much an introduction and overview of the practice and set the course for the future endeavors for all of us in the class. I want to share a section of the text we used in hopes of helping the XP visitor better understand the views I forward. It is important for the visitor to realize that I'm not the only one who holds these views (millions do) and I'm not the first to say them (these views have been around a long time). These views are backed by research and are merely how I was trained... there should be no real controversy here. The only real controversy (and the reason I feel a need to speak out) is that ecological, reciprocal-deterministic, and humanistic views have lost the war and the medical model (DSM/clinical model) has apparently won (for now)... but I'm not giving up. In 2014 we have how many millions of students walking around having been diagnosed with some invented DSM "disease" and placed on intensive schedules of medications?
From School Psychology, Essentials of Theory and Practice by Reynolds, Gutkin, Elliott, & Witt (1984, pp. 31-32):
"The medical model in psychology emerged from psychoanalytic theory (Stuart, 1970). A central postulate of this model is that psychological disturbances are best understood and modified through the intensive study of intrapsychic life. The medical model assumes that (a) behavior that deviates in a negative direction from the normative standards is a reflection of a personal disease (or disturbance, disorder, or dysfunction) and (b) behavior classified as deviant must be changed within the individual by a curative process (Reger, 1972). The first assumption implies that children who cannot be maintained or accommodated in a regular education program are suffering from an internal psychoeducational disorder. The second assumption also has practical implications that influence educational programs. Once children are classified as deviant or "diseased," the educational system must respond to cure them. Educational "cures" seem to come most frequently in the form of special education classes that tend to isolate the "diseased" child from normal or healthy children.
The medical model of psychological and educational services for children who are experiencing learning and behavior problems has been seriously challenged on conceptual, empirical, and practical grounds (Reger, 1972; Szasz, 1960; Zubin, 1967). Szasz (1960) argued that many of the basic assumptions underlying the medical model were untenable. The assumption with which he took the greatest issue was that psychopathology was best conceptualized as "mental illness." He believed that psychotherapists dealt with problems in ordinary living rather than with mental illness. Therefore, psychological disturbance was better understood in the context of human value systems than in the context of mental symptoms. This conceptualization of psychological problems was influenced precisely because it removed the locus of psychopathology from the human psyche and focused on the relationship between individuals and society.
Reger (1972) also questioned the utility of the medical model, particularly when used in special education: 'When a child is seen as a "patient" in school, when he is looked a as a carrier of a medical-model illness (or deviation, etc.) then the teacher and the school are relieved of much of the responsibility for the child. If he makes little or no progress, it is because of his condition rather than the school teacher.' (Reger, 1972, pp. 11-12)
Alternative models of human behavior, especially those which acknowledge the role other people and environmental factors have in shaping a child's behavior, are currently prominent in the eyes of many educators and psychologists. Chief among these are the behavioral and ecological models. The major postulate of those espousing the behavioral model is that human behavior is primarily a function of environmental events (Skinner, 1953). The ecological model is built on a similar supposition, that is, human behavior results from a complex interaction between environmental factors and the individual characteristics of people (Barker, 1965, 1968; Hunt, 1967; Lewin, 1951; Reilly, 1974).
Both the behavioral and ecological models provide an alternative approach to understanding human behavior that is responsive to the criticisms directed at the medical model. For example, pathology is viewed as behavior that is deemed inappropriate (generally excessive or deficient) when compared to subjective norms and values, rather than as an "illness" in any absolute sense (Ullman & Krasner, 1969). Advocates of both approaches reject a "mental illness" or intrasychic causal explanation of psychopathology and instead are oriented toward the belief that human problems are primarily the result of interactions between people and their environments.
An ecologically-oriented model of behavior which also takes individuals' cognitions into consideration would be the most suitable model for analyzing the problems of all children, not just potentially abnormal children. Therefore, we believe the reciprocal determinism model (Bandura, 1974, 1977, 1978) of human behavior is the model of choice for school psychologists, as well as for other psychologists since they too interact with children and youth who experience a wide range of problems."
So don't listen to me, but I hope you'll listen to Bandura, Szasz, Reynolds, et al...
Miss D's Guest Appearances!
A Great Resource & Site!
A Sunday Times Bestseller, Ben Goldacre's Bad Science pretty much hits the nail on the head as far as Miss Diagnosis is concerned. Bad science and the subsequent misdiagnoses and lifetime of medications harm humans. Go to the Bad Science website and follow the links to purchase this book. And while you're there, be sure to enjoy the Bad Science site!
Archived: The Revolution Has Finally Arrived?
Monday, May 6th, 2013
Finally, millions are starting to get it!
According to The Huffington Post, "Diagnostic inflation is already running rampant at what seems like an accelerating pace. Last week the CDC reported that rates of autism had jumped rapidly once again to a one in 50 - 40 times greater than 20 years ago and up from one in 80 last year and one in 110 two years ago. The CDC also found that a ridiculous 20 percent of high school boys now have a diagnosis of ADD and that a troubling 10 percent are on medication. This makes no sense."
Miss Diagnosis has been a leader in this revolution for a long time. Finally, a victory for humans.
We can celebrate right now, but realize this is just one small battle won; the war is not over yet. There's a long way to go and Miss Diagnosis will continue to be at the forefront in this battle for human and civil rights.
Archived: Humans Win A Battle But The War Is Not Over
Originally published in May of 2013.
Humans have won a battle! There are plenty of battles left before the war is finally won, but NIMH has finally stepped forth and has thrown out the DSM, and for all the right reasons. I still don't know what took them so long.
Those of you who have followed my sites since 1994 know my message has always remained clear and consistent. In the article by Thomas Insel below, my main points of concern, as articulated by him, have been highlighted in RED.
1) The DSM invents categories;
2) A set of labels are invented, resulting in misdiagnosis (misdiagnosis can be harmful to humans);
3) There is no real science - a group gets together and through consensus, invents conditions;
4) Treatment is always the same no matter what the condition: meds, therapy, brain stimulation (if necessary), and psychosurgery (if needed);
5) Humans struggling with real-life issues deserve better;
6) There needs to be some kind of research;
7) Better outcomes are possible;
8) Patients and families should welcome these changes; and
9) We can do better
I need to point out I'm not the only one who has expressed these concerns; millions are finally starting to get it.
After a fifteen year battle, I feel some redemption. Through the years as I have [had the courage to state these unpopular views] I have been called tin-hat, crazy, ignorant, and, well, quite a few other things. I was ostricized from my local professional organization because they didn't want me to rock the boat. It's heck being 20 years ahead of my time but now I can say, "hey, I guess I was right all along, eh?" And I am proud to have had the courage and the ethics to stand up and speak the truth - so that my clients can be better served - all along. For those of you who stayed quiet, what are you going to do now? Will you be able to look at yourself in the mirror? And what about those of you who are going to continue to diagnose, medicate, and collect your insurance?
My message on the XP site will need remain the same. It is important to note this is just one battle won in the entire war. Apparently, APA clinicians are going to keep going on, diagnosing their ADHD, recommending meds and therapy, and brain stimulation and/or psychosurgery, as long as they can continue to receive their insurance payments.
And there is more. I always try to be fair. In education, we do the same thing: there really is no such thing as a learning disability, except that the construct has been agreed-upon through consensus... there is much work to do.
Break free from the shackles of misdiagnosis!!!
Thomas Insel's full statement is below... after you read it, celebrate this evening! The war resumes tomorrow.
by Thomas Insel on April 29, 2013
In a few weeks, the American Psychiatric Association will release its new edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). This volume will tweak several current diagnostic categories, from autism spectrum disorders to mood disorders. While many of these changes have been contentious, the final product involves mostly modest alterations of the previous edition, based on new insights emerging from research since 1990 when DSM-IV was published. Sometimes this research recommended new categories (e.g., mood dysregulation disorder) or that previous categories could be dropped (e.g., Asperger’s syndrome).1
The goal of this new manual, as with all previous editions, is to provide a common language for describing psychopathology. While DSM has been described as a “Bible” for the field, it is, at best, a dictionary, creating a set of labels and defining each. The strength of each of the editions of DSM has been “reliability” – each edition has ensured that clinicians use the same terms in the same ways. The weakness is its lack of validity. Unlike our definitions of ischemic heart disease, lymphoma, or AIDS, the DSM diagnoses are based on a consensus about clusters of clinical symptoms, not any objective laboratory measure. In the rest of medicine, this would be equivalent to creating diagnostic systems based on the nature of chest pain or the quality of fever. Indeed, symptom-based diagnosis, once common in other areas of medicine, has been largely replaced in the past half century as we have understood that symptoms alone rarely indicate the best choice of treatment.
Patients with mental disorders deserve better. NIMH has launched the Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) project to transform diagnosis by incorporating genetics, imaging, cognitive science, and other levels of information to lay the foundation for a new classification system. Through a series of workshops over the past 18 months, we have tried to define several major categories for a new nosology (see below). This approach began with several assumptions:
A diagnostic approach based on the biology as well as the symptoms must not be constrained by the current DSM categories,
Mental disorders are biological disorders involving brain circuits that implicate specific domains of cognition, emotion, or behavior,
Each level of analysis needs to be understood across a dimension of function,
Mapping the cognitive, circuit, and genetic aspects of mental disorders will yield new and better targets for treatment.
It became immediately clear that we cannot design a system based on biomarkers or cognitive performance because we lack the data. In this sense, RDoC is a framework for collecting the data needed for a new nosology. But it is critical to realize that we cannot succeed if we use DSM categories as the “gold standard.”2 The diagnostic system has to be based on the emerging research data, not on the current symptom-based categories. Imagine deciding that EKGs were not useful because many patients with chest pain did not have EKG changes. That is what we have been doing for decades when we reject a biomarker because it does not detect a DSM category. We need to begin collecting the genetic, imaging, physiologic, and cognitive data to see how all the data – not just the symptoms – cluster and how these clusters relate to treatment response.
That is why NIMH will be re-orienting its research away from DSM categories. Going forward, we will be supporting research projects that look across current categories – or sub-divide current categories – to begin to develop a better system. What does this mean for applicants? Clinical trials might study all patients in a mood clinic rather than those meeting strict major depressive disorder criteria. Studies of biomarkers for “depression” might begin by looking across many disorders with anhedonia or emotional appraisal bias or psychomotor retardation to understand the circuitry underlying these symptoms. What does this mean for patients? We are committed to new and better treatments, but we feel this will only happen by developing a more precise diagnostic system. The best reason to develop RDoC is to seek better outcomes.
RDoC, for now, is a research framework, not a clinical tool. This is a decade-long project that is just beginning. Many NIMH researchers, already stressed by budget cuts and tough competition for research funding, will not welcome this change. Some will see RDoC as an academic exercise divorced from clinical practice. But patients and families should welcome this change as a first step towards "precision medicine,” the movement that has transformed cancer diagnosis and treatment. RDoC is nothing less than a plan to transform clinical practice by bringing a new generation of research to inform how we diagnose and treat mental disorders. As two eminent psychiatric geneticists recently concluded, “At the end of the 19th century, it was logical to use a simple diagnostic approach that offered reasonable prognostic validity. At the beginning of the 21st century, we must set our sights higher.”3
The major RDoC research domains:
Negative Valence Systems
Positive Valence Systems
Systems for Social Processes
1 Mental health: On the spectrum. Adam D. Nature. 2013 Apr 25;496(7446):416-8. doi: 10.1038/496416a. No abstract available. PMID: 23619674
2 Why has it taken so long for biological psychiatry to develop clinical tests and what to do about it? Kapur S, Phillips AG, Insel TR. Mol Psychiatry. 2012 Dec;17(12):1174-9. doi: 10.1038/mp.2012.105. Epub 2012 Aug 7.PMID:22869033
3 The Kraepelinian dichotomy - going, going... but still not gone. Craddock N, Owen MJ. Br J Psychiatry. 2010 Feb;196(2):92-5. doi: 10.1192/bjp.bp.109.073429. PMID: 20118450k
Archived: 2012 Humanistic Movement
Saturday, September 29th, 2012
Wow, do I have some great news for you!
From the American Psychological Association's Division 32, The Society for Humanistic Psychology, comes a glimmer of hope and optimism for the millions of us who have known all along that misdiagnosing humans with invented "disabilities" and placing them on medications and enrolling them into a lifetime of therapy so that others can make a lot of money is, well, pretty bogus.
APA's Division 32 has written an Open Letter to APA's* DSM-5 Task Force, outlining concerns about the future manual. APA Division 32 is suggesting writing an alternative manual, hopefully In Real Language, to the DSM and ICD.
I encourage you to do something terrific right now:
1. Visit the site, read the issues, make up your own mind;
2. Sign the petition. 14,017 signatures are not enough;
3. Spread the word by forwarding APA's form letter.
I've been calling for this revolution for a long time - I don't understand why it took Division 32 five editions of the DSM to finally take a stand. Still, better late than never.
APA calls it reform - I call it revolution. Either way, let's make it happen.
*Remember, there is a world of difference between the APA (American Psychological Association) and the APA (American Psychiatric Association).
UPDATE: Thursday, May 9th, 2013: In an unbelievable but spectacular turn of events, the National Institute of Mental Health has abandoned the DSM-V and for all the right reasons!
UPDATE: Saturday, March 30th, 2013: Well, in spite of so many concerns and questions raised by so many, even those within the field, the DSM-5 is moving ahead and will soon be officially published. Property rights have once again won over human rights. Be careful what you ask for.
Miss Diagnosis © 1998-2019. XPsych.com Bakersfield, CA USA. Some rights reserved.
Thank You for Visiting!
Miss Diagnosis will continue to courageously speak out in favor of humans.
Updated: Wednesday, December 31st, 2014
School-to-Mental Health Pipeline © 2014-21. Donald J. Asbridge, Ed.S. Bakersfield, CA USA. All rights reserved.
Miss Diagnosis © 1998, 2005, 2012-19. Donald J. Asbridge, Ed.S. Bakersfield, CA USA. All rights reserved.