“Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD), or, as it is referred to in most recent version of the manual DSM-IV,, is a genuine psychiatric disorder. However, the numbers of cases of MPD are far higher in North America than in any other part of the world. Many suspect that this surplus of MPD cases is the product of American culture and over-indulgent psychiatrists and psychotherapists.”
In a 2004 review for the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, the American psychiatrist, Dr. August Piper, remarked that more MPD cases were discussed in the medical literature in the five years after inclusion in the DSM-III than in the preceding two centuries. Between 1980 and 1986, more than 6000 patients in the United States were diagnosed with the disorder. Champions of the disorder, such as psychiatrist Colin A. Ross, began to claim that MPD was rampant…”
Most psychiatrists believe that the diagnosis of MPD has gotten entirely out of hand, and it isn’t merely due to the unexpectedly large number of patients being diagnosed with the illness. … Personalities began to propagate like locusts. … Yet, reports of patients with hundreds of separate alter personalities became routine. For example, Dr. Richard P. Kluft, a psychiatrist specializing in the treatment of MPD at the University of Pennsylvania, reported in a 1988 paper that one of his patients had over 4000 “alters”.
Others suffer delusions and thought disorders bizarre enough to warrant diagnoses of schizophrenia rather than MPD. Still, the question remains as to what degree leading questions and indulgences of vivid imaginations have prompted the alternate “personalities” to come into being.”
“The sufferers of Multiple Personalities also appear to feed off each other’s imaginations. Websites and Internet discussion groups for “multiples” abound, and sufferers take pride in how many alter personalities populate their minds. Pseudoscientific jargon flows freely in sites aiming to provide a technical basis for the illness and snare “multiples” for cutting edge psychotherapy. … This is pure baloney.”
Full Article: Huffington Post Retrieved 4/2/11.
Multiple Personality Disorder and other culture bound psychiatric conditions are discussed in Dr. Mendelson’s new book, “The Great Singapore Penis Panic and the Future of American Mass Hysteria“.