New Personality Disorder Framework


The new International Classification of Diseases (ICD Edition 11) is soon due for release in January 2022. Produced by the World Health Organisation, the ICD is an alternative diagnostic framework to the US Diagnostical & Statistical Manual of Mental Health Disorders (DSM). The ICD is proposing a radical restructure of the Personality Disorder framework, replacing all existing 11 existing disorders with a general Personality Disorder category. Instead of the classic signs / symptoms diagnosis of individual disorders, it will instead diagnose according to five traits, which are aligned to the Big Five Personality Factor model and the Alterative Personality Disorder Model offered in the DSM (5). It will also include severity of the disorder, as this offers a greater clinical insight into the presenting needs of clients. As such, the diagnosis places itself in line with the idea that Personality Disorder is simply individuals who score on the high ends of general personality traits. To read a review of the new structure, click here.


Whilst this makes obvious clinical sense to embedded Personality Disorder into a wider personality framework, there may be some problems with this approach. Namely that clinicians and researchers will have to name the scoring on these five factors when specifically diagnosing an individual or identifying research cohorts. This is going to prove a wordy and confusing set of descriptions for those who are not in possession of deep road map of the five core traits. As a result, despite the WHO's efforts to eradicate the idea of individual diagnosis, new names for the various possible clusters of 5 traits may emerge as a short hand. We shall see....

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