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DSM-IV-TR and the Paraphilias: An Argument for Removal

Charles Moser, Ph.D., M.D.
Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality
San Francisco, California

Peggy J. Kleinplatz, Ph.D
University of Ottawa
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


The DSM-IV-TR (2000) sets its own standards for inclusion of diagnoses and for changes in its text. The Paraphilia section is analyzed from the perspective of how well the DSM meets those standards. The concept of Paraphilias as psychopathology was analyzed and assessed critically to determine if it meets the definition of a mental disorder presented in the DSM; it does not. The Paraphilia diagnostic category was critiqued for logic, consistency, clarity, and whether it constitutes a distinct mental disorder. The DSM presents "facts"; to substantiate various points made in the text. The veracity of these "facts"; was scrutinized. Little evidence was found in their support. Problems with the tradition of equating particular sexual interests with psychopathology were highlighted. It was concluded that the Paraphilia section is so severely flawed that its removal from the DSM is advocated.

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