Archives of Sexual Behavior

, Volume 39, Issue 3, pp 587–590 | Cite as

A Critique of the Proposed DSM-V Diagnosis of Pedophilia

  • William O’DonohueEmail author
Letter to the Editor

Given their foundational role, examining the adequacy of diagnostic criteria and attempting to improve these is one of the most important activities our profession undertakes. However, devising and implementing satisfactory diagnostic criteria is a very difficult task for several reasons: (1) there is no consensual methodology that can be used to produce valid diagnostic criteria; (2) language is complex and attaching words to clinical phenomena gives rise to a whole host of thorny linguistic subproblems (e.g., the meaning of each word used); and (3) there is often missing information that would be useful in revisions identifying what the major problems are regarding the current diagnostic criteria (e.g., sources of current inter-rater reliability). However, despite these problems, the profession and other stakeholders are interested in the question of the extent to which the current criteria “carve nature at its joints” and can be successfully implemented by clinicians.

Blanchard (2009...


Sexual Orientation Current Criterion Antisocial Personality Disorder Sexual Attraction Agoraphobia 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The author is an advisor to the DSM-V Workgroup on Sexual and Gender Identity Disorders (Chair, Kenneth J. Zucker, Ph.D.).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of Nevada, RenoRenoUSA

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