The diagnostic construct of complex PTSD or DESNOS is not currently recognized in the DSM-IV as a freestanding diagnosis, but is instead presented as associated features of PTSD. Complex PTSD is expected to be included in the next edition of the diagnostic guidebook, the DSM-V. However, it is unclear if it will be given the name complex PTSD or DESNOS. Currently, both terms are referred to interchangeably in the clinical literature in this area.
Simple post-traumatic stress consists of changes to three areas of functioning, while complex post-traumatic stress consists of changes to six domains of functioning. The diagnostic criteria for determining the presence of complex post-traumatic stress entails that a number of specific changes (outlined below) are present in each of the six domains of functioning.
Diagnostic criteria for complex post-traumatic stress responses
(I) Alteration in Regulation of Affect and Impulses
(A and one of B to F required)
modulation of anger
difficulty modulating sexual involvement
(II) Alterations in Attention or Consciousness
(A or B required)
transient dissociative episodes and depersonalization
(III) Alterations in Self-Perception
(Two of A to F required)
guilt and responsibility
nobody can understand
(IV) Alterations in Relations with Others
(One of A to C required)
inability to trust
(Two of A to E required)
problems with the digestive system
(VI) Alterations in Systems of Meaning
(A or B required)
This article has been copied from http://knowledgex.camh.net/amhspecialists/specialized_treatment/trauma_treatment/first_stage_trauma/FirstStageTT_ch6/Pages/criteria_complex_ptsd.aspx to provide people with information on complex PTSD diagnostic criteria. For more information please check out the link above and read their article on how that diagnosis is made.