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Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder: The Result of a Problem Looking for a Diagnosis 

Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder: The Result of a Problem Looking for a Diagnosis
Chapter:
Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder: The Result of a Problem Looking for a Diagnosis
Author(s):

Gabrielle A. Carlson

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199378821.003.0007
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date: 18 November 2019

Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder (DMDD) is a condition defined by frequent explosive outbursts occurring within the context of chronic, pervasive irritability, beginning in early childhood although not diagnosable until age 6. Circumstantial evidence classifies this condition as a mood disorder, which is where it resides in DSM-5. This chapter reviews how the condition evolved and speculates that although it originated ostensibly as a response to the overdiagnosis of bipolar disorder (BD) in children, the overdiagnosis occurred because of the absence of a good diagnostic home for explosive outbursts. In the absence of a specific interview designed to elicit information about irritability separate from the conditions in which it is a symptom, a diagnostic bias may be associated with the interview module from which the symptom is derived. Finally, diagnostic implications vary depending on who reports the explosive outbursts and irritability and the sample being studied.

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