The author examines the history of the diagnosis of hysteria in psychoanalysis and psychiatry focusing in particular on its vicissitudes in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders from the second edition of 1968 to the fifth of 2013. In the two latest editions the term hysteria has been dropped and with it also the concept encompassing this pathology that instead is present in the psychiatric and psychoanalytic tradition starting from the first modern theories formulated in the late 1800s (Briquet, Babinski, Bernheim, Charcot, Janet and Freud). Its current nosological derivatives can be found in the DSM in various categories such as Conversion disorder, Pseudokinesis, Dissociative disorders in addition to the Histrionic Personality Disorder. With the help of psychoanalytical literature, the Author identifies the common denominator of hysterical functioning in the tendency to communicate distress through indirect channels (body, states of consciousness, emotions). This would justify the preservation of this diagnosis as a single category.
Keywords: Hysteria, DSM-V, somatisation, conversion, dissociation, represssion