The Clinical Utility of the Diagnostic Criteria for Psychosomatic Research: A Review of Studies

Piero Porcelli, Jenny Guidi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: The Diagnostic Criteria for Psychosomatic Research (DCPR) are a set of 12 psychosomatic syndromes and are provided with a reliable diagnostic structured interview. The DCPR have been proposed 20 years ago as an integrative assessment strategy that supplements the traditional psychiatric nosography for identifying patients within a given illness population whose psychosocial factors have clinical significance. This paper reviews their clinical utility, conceived as the degree and the amount of influence that the instrument has on multiple decisions and outcomes in clinical practice. Methods: Published reports which involved the use of the DCPR were identified by searching electronic databases. Studies which best displayed the clinical utility of the DCPR system were then selected and reviewed. Results: The DCPR system showed its clinical utility regarding the following clinical issues: (1) subtyping medical patients, (2) identifying subthreshold or undetected syndromes, (3) evaluating the burden of somatic syndromes, and (4) predicting treatment outcomes and identifying risk factors. Conclusions: The DCPR may help clinicians during the assessment process to recognize clinical conditions underlying symptom presentation, with important therapeutic and prognostic implications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)265-272
Number of pages8
JournalPsychotherapy and Psychosomatics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Aug 23 2015



  • Alexithymia
  • Clinical utility
  • Demoralization
  • Depression
  • Diagnostic Criteria for Psychosomatic Research
  • Illness behavior
  • Irritable mood
  • Psychosomatic medicine
  • Somatization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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