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Religious and Spiritual Issues in Psychiatric Diagnosis

A Research Agenda for DSM-V

John R. Peteet, M.D., Francis G. Lu, M.D., and William E. Narrow, M.D., M.P.H.

  • 2011
  • 297 Pages
  • ISBN 978-0-89042-658-6
  • Item #2658

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Religious and Spiritual Issues in Psychiatric Diagnosis: A Research Agenda for DSM-V examines the role of spiritual and religious considerations in the DSM revision process. The volume includes chapters on each major category of psychiatric disorder, with an analysis of the implications of religion and spirituality for their diagnosis, course, and outcome. Based on the work presented by the prominent clinicians and researchers who participated in the 2006 Corresponding Committee on Religion, Spirituality, and Psychiatry of the American Psychiatric Association, the volume addresses the spiritual and philosophical issues involved in distinguishing a psychiatric disorder from a spiritual condition.

This volume is unique in reviewing the literature on spirituality and major psychiatric disorders with the objective of clarifying where existing descriptions of diagnostic criteria and of the course and outcome of these disorders require revision. In addition, the contributors identify areas that demand further research. Only in this book can clinicians find a comprehensive treatment of this important topic, as well as features that enhance understanding and encourage future scholarship.

  • Each chapter makes specific recommendations for revising the wording of the DSM, and each is followed by two commentaries that contextualize, analyze, and critique the chapter's recommendations.
  • Other chapter contributors make the case for updating the V Code for a Spiritual or Religious Problem, and discuss the place of spiritual and religious considerations in the Outline for a Cultural Formulation.
  • Mental health practitioners from all disciplines who seek to practice in a more integrated, holistic fashion will find in this volume a foundation for including religious and spiritual considerations in their cases, as well as recognition and validation that these problems are worthy of clinical attention.

Psychiatry has often been viewed as hostile to religion, and the DSM has been criticized for neglecting this vital dimension of human experience. As interest in the intersection between spirituality and mental health continues to grow, Religious and Spiritual Issues in Psychiatric Diagnosis: A Research Agenda for DSM-V will become an ever more relevant and necessary resource for addressing these concerns in a positive, practical, and systematic way.


  • Introduction. Spirituality and depression: a background for the development of DSM-V. Schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders. Substance use disorders and spirituality. Religious and spiritual issues in anxiety disorders and adjustment disorders. Religion and spirituality in the description of posttraumatic stress disorder. Spiritual and religious perspectives on child and adolescent psychopathology. Religious and spiritual issues in personality disorders. DSM-IV religious and spiritual problems. Religious and spiritual issues in the outline for cultural formulation. Mapping the logical geography of delusion and spiritual experience: a linguistic-analytic research agenda covering problems, methods, and outputs. Index.


    Dan G. Blazer, M.D., Ph.D.
    Derek Bolton, Ph.D.
    C. R. Cloninger, M.D.
    Mary Lynn Dell, M.D., D.Min.
    Armando R. Favazza, M.D., M.P.H.
    Richard J. Frances, M.D.
    K.W. M. (Bill) Fulford, D.Phil., FRCP, FRCPsych
    Marc Galanter, M.D.
    David M. Gellerman, M.D., Ph.D.
    Gerrit Glas, M.D., Ph.D.
    Linda Glickman, Ph.D.
    Philippe Huguelet, M.D.
    Allan M. Josephson, M.D.
    Paramjit T. Joshi, M.D.
    Jocelyn A. Kilgore, M.D.
    Harold G. Koenig, M.D.
    James W. Lomax, M.D.
    Francis G. Lu, M.D.
    David Lukoff, Ph.D.
    P. Alex Mabe, Ph.D.
    William E. Narrow, M.D., M.P.H.
    Carol S. North, M.D., M.P.E.
    John R. Peteet, M.D.
    Philip A. Quanbeck II, Ph.D.
    Jennifer Radden, D.Phil.
    Teresa A. Rummans, M.D.
    John Z. Sadler, M.D.
    Bruce W. Scotton, M.D.
    Edward P. Shafranske, Ph.D., ABPP
    Len Sperry, M.D., Ph.D.
    Dan J. Stein, M.D., Ph.D.
    Stephen Strack, Ph.D.
    Margaret L. Stuber, M.D.
    Samuel B. Thielman, M.D., Ph.D.
    Robert J. Ursano, M.D.
    George E. Vaillant, M.D.
    H.M. Van Praag, M.D., Ph.D.
    Joseph Westermeyer, M.D., Ph.D.
    C. Paul Yang, M.D., Ph.D.

About the Authors

John R. Peteet, M.D., is Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, and former Chair of the American Psychiatric Association Corresponding Committee on Spirituality, Religion and Psychiatry.

Francis G. Lu, M.D., is Luke and Grace Kim Endowed Professor in Cultural Psychiatry, Director of Cultural Psychiatry, and Associate Director of Residency Training in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at University of California Davis Health System in Sacramento, California.

William E. Narrow, M.D., M.P.H., is Associate Director of the Division of Research at the American Psychiatric Association in Arlington, Virginia and Research Director of the DSM-V Task Force.

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