Child maltreatment—Clinical PTSD diagnosis not enough?!: Comment on Resick et al. (2012)


  • Ramón J. L. Lindauer

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Academic Medical Centre, University of Amsterdam and De Bascule, Academic Centre for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Amsterdam, Netherlands
    • AMC–de Bascule, Meibergdreef 5, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, Netherlands.
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Child maltreatment has a high prevalence. It can lead to severe psychological and physical problems from childhood to late adulthood. At present, the recognition and treatment of child abuse and its consequences is inadequate. Diagnostic criteria, such as those defined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders of the American Psychiatric Association, are vital for that purpose. Resick and colleagues (2012) conclude that insufficient scientific basis now exists for incorporating complex posttraumatic stress disorder (CPTSD) into DSM-5. Although they are right from a research point of view, what would be the clinical, political, and social consequences of not including it? This comment discusses those consequences from the standpoint that treating children with developmental trauma disorder at an early age will serve to prevent later sequelae.