Essentials of Psychiatric Diagnosis, Revised Edition: Responding to the Challenge of Dsm-5(r) (Revised)  -     By: Allen Frances
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Essentials of Psychiatric Diagnosis, Revised Edition: Responding to the Challenge of Dsm-5(r) (Revised)

Guilford Press / 2013 / Paperback

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Product Description

Grounded in author Allen Frances's extensive clinical experience, this comprehensive yet concise guide helps the busy clinician find the right psychiatric diagnosis and avoid the many pitfalls that lead to errors. Covering every disorder routinely encountered in clinical practice, Frances provides the ICD-9-CM codes and (where feasible) ICD-10-CM codes required for billing, a useful screening question, a colorful descriptive prototype, lucid diagnostic tips, and a discussion of other disorders that must be ruled out. The book closes with an index of the most common presenting symptoms, listing possible diagnoses that must be considered for each. Frances was instrumental in the development of past editions of the DSM and provides helpful cautions on questionable aspects of DSM-5.

The revised edition features ICD-10-CM codes where feasible throughout the chapters, plus a Crosswalk to ICD-10-CM codes in the Appendix.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 218
Vendor: Guilford Press
Publication Date: 2013
Dimensions: 8.90 X 5.90 (inches)
ISBN: 1462513484
ISBN-13: 9781462513482

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Author Bio

Allen Frances, MD, is a clinician, educator, researcher, and leading authority on psychiatric diagnosis. He chaired the DSM-IV Task Force, was a member of the Task Force that prepared DSM-III-R, and wrote the final version of the Personality Disorders section in DSM-III. The author of several hundred papers and more than a dozen books, most recently Saving Normal: An Insider's Revolt against Out-of-Control Psychiatric Diagnosis, DSM-5, Big Pharma, and the Medicalization of Ordinary Life, Dr. Frances is Professor Emeritus and former Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Duke University.


Essentials of Psychiatric Diagnosis is simply the best book I've read about how to accurately diagnose your patients. Frances's combination of vast experience, down-in-the-trenches common sense, and informed skepticism is unique. Whether you’re a psychiatrist, psychologist, social worker, nurse, crisis counselor, or any other mental health professional, you should buy this book, read it cover to cover initially, and then keep it in your office to refer back to frequently. I’m glad this book had not been published before I wrote my book on the psychiatric interview, because the competition would have made me choose a different topic!
-Daniel J. Carlat, MD,
Tufts University School of Medicine

With his clinical expertise, leadership roles in prior DSM editions, and healthy skepticism about overdiagnosis and excessive medication, Frances has crafted a clinical gem. This clear and concise book describes a sequential assessment process and provides screening questions, easily remembered prototypic descriptions, differential diagnostic considerations, and cautionary notes about diagnostic traps. Frances recognizes the need for a diagnosis to guide intervention, while steering clear of diagnostic reification. All clinicians need this book for frequent reference, and it should be a required text in mental health training programs.
-John F. Clarkin, PhD,
Weill Cornell Medical College

This easy-to-read, commonsensical handbook guides mental health clinicians through the thicket of differential diagnosis in psychiatry. Frances - a thoughtful and effective critic of the excesses of DSM-5 - shows where diagnosis is valid and essential, and where a premature diagnosis or a diagnostic fad has the potential to hurt patients. Everyone who uses diagnosis in daily practice will benefit from the down-to-earth wisdom of this book.
-Joel Paris, MD,
McGill University, Canada

A 'must have' for mental health professionals. Frances provides useful, easy-to-understand information about psychiatric diagnosis and coding for clinicians in all mental health disciplines.
-K. Dayle Jones, PhD, LMHC,
Mental Health Counseling Program, University of Central Florida

Frances demonstrates an unusual ability to communicate the tacit knowledge of an expert into understandable concepts and ideas that will be appreciated by clinicians and students alike. Elegantly simple screening questions precede each disorder and cut through the diagnostic murk. Facilitating patient-centered care, teamwork, and collaboration, this is a comprehensive diagnostic resource for the whole treatment team.
-Margaret (Peggy) Halter, PhD, APRN,
Ashland University

This volume should head the list of user-friendly guides to psychiatric diagnosis. Frances draws on his considerable experience and contributions, such as heading the DSM-IV Task Force, to produce a work that will be indispensable for primary care clinicians and all professionals and students in mental health care. The guide contains screening questions, prototypic case descriptions, ICD-9-CM codes (and ICD-10-CM codes where feasible), and specific cautionary statements to reduce diagnostic inflation and raise concerns about aspects of DSM-5. The material is handled with sensitivity and compassion, with the patient's best interests always the central consideration. This book is a welcome arrival at a time when recent trends in diagnosis are increasingly attracting controversy. I will be using this excellent guide in my own work and will recommend it to my students and colleagues.
-Adrian Wells, PhD,
University of Manchester, United Kingdom

I selected this book as a required text in my master's-level course on the DSM. This is the best companion to the DSM that I have found since I began teaching this course. Many of my students have limited experience with psychiatric assessment and diagnosis, and find the DSM overwhelming and off-putting. Frances provides the perfect counterbalance to DSM-5 orthodoxy. His book is filled with clinical practice wisdom that will benefit students in their day-to-day work with clients. I expect that this will be one of the books that students keep on their shelves well after graduation as they work in the field. Social workers are the largest provider group of mental health care; this user-friendly resource will help them develop the skills they need to accurately assess and diagnose.
-Mark J. Brenner, PhD, ACSW, LICSW,
Bridgewater State University

Editorial Reviews

“This book does not follow the organizational structure found in the DSM-5. Instead, it presents disorders roughly in the order of their frequency of being encountered in clinical practice, which does, in my opinion, make the book more interesting and useful….I can see using this book as a useful secondary text in teaching master of social work (MSW) students about using the DSM….Supplementing…with Frances’s Essentials of Psychiatric Diagnosis will greatly help in developing a clinical social worker’s diagnostic skills….We need to learn the DSM-5 and learn to use it well. Allen Frances’s Essentials of Psychiatric Diagnosis can be a very useful tool to help us achieve this goal of professional social work education.”

"This is a very worthwhile book that highlights concerns about DSM-5 that many will share."

"The book is for anyone interested in psychiatric diagnosis, and the author specifically mentions that the book will assist busy primary care doctors to be directed toward an accurate diagnosis. As a director of behavioral medicine for a family medicine residency, I see value in the book for physicians as the author mentions as well that it is a quick reference….I would especially recommend this work to other behavioral scientists working in family medicine. It provides some key teaching points for students and residents….Dr. Frances is not one for superficial rambling, and he gets to the points that need to be made in this book….The wisdom that is derived by the experience of a master clinician in psychiatry comes through its pages."

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