The forthcoming revision of the diagnostic and classificatory system: perspectives based on the European psychiatric tradition



Europe has a rich tradition in psychopathology and psychiatric classification. This could be helpful developing new classification systems like ICD-11 and DSM-V. Some examples of this are described and further discussed, such as the categorical vs. the syndromatological approach, the relevance of hierarchical rules for the delineation of nosological entities, the antagonistic tradition of unitarian vs. splitting approaches and the relevance of a differentiated psychopathological description. Finally, the conclusion is that a too radical change of the classificatory system, e.g. in the direction of a purely symptomatical/dimensional systematic, or a totally new classification based on modern new biological findings, might be problematic and premature.


psychiatric classification schizophrenia affective disorders depression psychotic spectrum 


Conflict of interest—financial disclosure statement

Prof. Dr. Moeller has received grants or is a consultant for and on the speakership bureaus of AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eisai, Eli Lilly, GlaxoSmithKline, Janssen Cilag, Lundbeck, Merck, Novartis, Organon, Pfizer, Sanofi-Aventis, Sepracor, Servier and Wyeth.


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© Springer 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dept. of PsychiatryUniversity of MunichMunichGermany

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