Hypersexual disorder

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Hypersexual disorder was proposed in 2010 for inclusion in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) of the American Psychiatric Association (APA). It was under consideration but ultimately rejected for inclusion in the Appendix of the DSM (December 2012).[1] The label "hypersexual disorder" was reportedly chosen because it did not imply any specific theory for what causes hypersexuality, which remains unknown.[2] A proposal to add sexual addiction to the DSM system had been previously rejected by the APA, as not enough evidence suggested to them that the condition is analogous to substance addictions, as that name would imply.[3][4][5]

In the diagnostic criteria proposed for Hypersexual Disorder by Kafka (2012), the label would apply when a person experiences several of the indicated symptoms (extreme amounts of time spent in the sexual activity, using the sexual activity in response to low mood or stress, failed attempts to reduce the behaviors, etc.).[6] Moreover, it would apply only when the problem lasted six months or more, when person experienced significant distress or impairment in major life areas because of it, and when the problem was not directly caused by a medication or drugs, as well as other criteria. Under the proposal, an official diagnosis would also specify the which behavior(s) are problematic in the case: masturbation, pornography use, cybersex, etc.

The APA reports that the updated manual, called the DSM-5, will be released in 2013.[7] The pre-2013 version of the manual, the DSM-IV-TR includes an entry called Sexual Disorder—Not Otherwise Specified (Sexual Disorder NOS), for disorders that are clinically significant, but do not have their own code. The DSM-IV-TR notes that Sexual Disorder NOS would apply to, among other conditions, "distress about a pattern of repeated sexual relationships involving a succession of lovers who are experienced by the individual only as things to be used".[8]

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