DSM-V and the stigma of mental illness

J Ment Health. 2010 Aug;19(4):318-27. doi: 10.3109/09638237.2010.492484.


Stigma associated with mental illness has been shown to have devastating effects on the lives of people with psychiatric disorders, their families, and those who care for them. In the current article, the relationship between diagnostic labels and stigma is examined in the context of the forthcoming DSM-V. Three types of negative outcomes are reviewed in detail - public stigma, self-stigma, and label avoidance. The article illustrates how a clinical diagnosis may exacerbate these forms of stigma through socio-cognitive processes of groupness, homogeneity, and stability. Initial draft revisions recently proposed by the DSM-V work groups are presented, and their possible future implications for stigma associated with mental illness are discussed.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cognition Disorders / classification
  • Cognition Disorders / diagnosis
  • Cognition Disorders / psychology
  • Comorbidity
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders*
  • Humans
  • Mental Disorders / classification
  • Mental Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Mental Disorders / psychology
  • Neurocognitive Disorders / classification
  • Neurocognitive Disorders / diagnosis
  • Neurocognitive Disorders / psychology
  • Personality Disorders / classification
  • Personality Disorders / diagnosis
  • Personality Disorders / psychology
  • Prejudice*
  • Psychology, Social
  • Psychometrics / statistics & numerical data
  • Psychopathology
  • Psychotic Disorders / classification
  • Psychotic Disorders / diagnosis
  • Psychotic Disorders / psychology
  • Reference Values
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Risk Assessment
  • Self Concept
  • Stereotyping