Archives of Sexual Behavior

, Volume 39, Issue 6, pp 1239–1244 | Cite as

DSM-5 Proposals for Paraphilias: Suggestions for Reducing False Positives Related to Use of Behavioral Manifestations

  • Michael B. FirstEmail author
Letter to the Editor

During each of the revisions of the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Workgroups comprised of experts in their respective fields are convened with the goal of considering changes to the diagnostic criteria. Based on my experiences working on the DSM-III-R and DSM-IV revisions, there is a natural tendency for Workgroups to focus on making changes aimed at broadening the diagnostic umbrella of their assigned categories with the goal of increasing diagnostic coverage, i.e., reducing what they consider to be false negatives, an effort which inevitably comes at the cost of increasing false positives (Pincus, Frances, Davis, First, & Widiger, 1992).

In the overall scheme of the DSM, false positives (i.e., erroneously giving a diagnostic label to an individual for whom it is not justified) are problematic because of the unnecessary stigma and inappropriate treatment that may result. However, because of their central role as a proxy for...


Sexual Arousal Sexual Offense Sexual Fantasy False Positive Diagnosis Pedophilia 
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.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Clinical Phenomenology, Department of PsychiatryNew York State Psychiatric Institute and Columbia UniversityNew YorkUSA

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