Classification of eating disorders: toward DSM-V

Int J Eat Disord. 2007 Nov;40 Suppl:S123-9. doi: 10.1002/eat.20436.


Objective: A goal of the DSM-IV revision is to increase clinical and research utility by improving diagnostic validity through reliance on empirical evidence. Currently defined eating disorder (ED) categories have limited validity and require refinement based on data.

Method: The available scientific evidence is considered in evaluating the current ED nosology.

Results: Specific recommendations include modifying ED classification by retaining categories but adding a dimensional component; removing the amenorrhea criterion for anorexia nervosa (AN); removing the subtypes for AN and bulimia nervosa (BN); making binge eating disorder (BED) an official diagnosis; and unifying the frequency and duration cut-points for BN and BED to once per week for 3 months. Priority research areas should include epidemiologic studies of full-range ED symptomatology and should focus on empirical validation for individual criterion.

Conclusion: There are significant issues to address in revising ED nosology as we move toward a more valid and useful DSM-V.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anorexia Nervosa / classification
  • Anorexia Nervosa / diagnosis
  • Anorexia Nervosa / psychology
  • Bulimia
  • Bulimia Nervosa / classification
  • Bulimia Nervosa / diagnosis
  • Bulimia Nervosa / psychology
  • Classification / methods
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders*
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / classification*
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / diagnosis
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / psychology
  • Humans
  • Reproducibility of Results