Dysthymic Disorder Diagnosis

(Also Known As: Disthymic Disorder Diagnosis, Dysthymia Diagnosis, Depression Diagnosis, Neurotic Depression Diagnosis, Mood Disorder Diagnosis, Chronic Depression Diagnosis, Depression - Chronic Diagnosis, Persistent Depressive Disorder Diagnosis)

(Reviewed by: Paul Peterson, Licensed Therapist)

How is Dysthymic Disorder Diagnosed?

Based on Diagnostic Statistical Manual for Mental Disorder (DSM-IV TR), Dysthymic Disorder diagnosis requires a person to meet the following criteria:

  • Adults will have felt depressed most of the day, for more days than not for at least 2 years in a row. Children and adolescents will have felt this way at least 1 year.
  • Presence, while depressed, of two or more of the following:5
    • Loss of appetite
    • Insomia or Hypersomnia
    • Low energy or fatigue
    • Low self-esteem
    • Poor concentration or difficulty making decisions
    • Feelings of hopelessness
  • The person will not have been without symptoms in the above two criteria for more than 2 months at a time.6
  • No major depressive episode has been present during the first two years of the disturbance.
  • There has never been a manic episode, a mixed episode or hypomanic episode, and criteria have never been met for cyclothymic disorder.
  • The disturbance does not occur exclusively during the course of chronic psychotic disorder, such as Schizophrenia or delusional disorder.
  • The symptoms are not due to direct physiological effects of a substance (e.g. drug abuse) or general medical condition (e.g. hypothyroidism)
  • The symptoms cause clinically significant distress or impairment or social, occupational, or other important areas of the functioning.

For a diagnosis of Dysthymic Disorder, the following criteria should also be investigated:

  • Early onset: before 21 years old
  • Late onset: 21 years or older
  • Specify (for most recent 2 years of Dysthymic Disorder) with atypical features

Could You Have Dysthymic Disorder?

Dysthymic Disorder Topics

Related Conditions

Anorexia Nervosa – Eating Disorder, Depression, Changes in Body Weight, Excessive Exercise
Anxiety Disorder NOS – Pathological Fears and Anxiety, Chronic Stress, Fatigue, Exhaustion, Phobia, Anxiousness, Depression
Bipolar Disorder – Manic Depression, Mood Changes, Hypomania, Delusion, Hallucinations, Psychosis