Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Complicated grief and the need for consensus diagnostic criteria: A literature review
by Lassiter, Scott D., M.S., California State University, Long Beach, 2011, 48; 1507699
Abstract (Summary)

The question of whether to include "complicated grief" (CG) as a distinct mental health disorder in the new edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-V) has attracted a large number of clinicians and researchers to both sides of the debate. This review study attempted to systematically evaluate the case for and against inclusion by detailing the primary arguments, reviewing the relevant empirical data, and seeing if current evidence meets the minimal conditions set by DSM scholars for the establishment of a new disorder. Key scientific considerations focused on whether CG could be reliably assessed, whether there was consensus in the scientific and clinical community regarding diagnostic criteria, and whether CG could be differentiated from other related disorders. More practical considerations focused on the clinical utility of the new disorder and possible downsides to diagnosis. The results of the study indicated that while establishing CG as a new diagnostic category could result in stigma or pathologizing of normal grief processes, and that there is not full consensus on diagnostic criteria, the benefits of inclusion far outweigh potential liabilities.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Saltzman, William
School: California State University, Long Beach
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 50/04M, Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Counseling Psychology, Quantitative psychology
Publication Number: 1507699
ISBN: 978-1-267-18213-5
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