Introducing a Revolutionary Diagnosis: Complex PTSD

Brad Kammer

19 Posts Published


September 18, 2018


The last game-changer in the mental health profession happened in 1980 when PTSD was added to the DSM-III.  Now, some 35 years later, developmental trauma has become the new game-changer.  There are many parallels between the game-changing events of 1980 and what is happening now in the mental health profession.  One of these parallels is that mental health practitioners aren’t aware of developmental trauma as a clinical issue nor of the game-change events it has set in motion (Barry & Janae Weinhold).

In June 2018, nearly 40 years after the APA controversially yet officially recognized PTSD as a mental disorder that required clinical treatment, the World Health Organization released the ICD-11 including a new diagnosis: Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD).

This diagnosis has the potential to completely revolutionize the world of mental health.

Understanding the long-term impact of unresolved early trauma is indeed a world health issue.  Attachment, relational and developmental trauma – which crosses all cultures, religions and communities – impacts the neurobiological development of children and creates life-long patterns of disorganization within the body, mind and relationships.

Perhaps a greater understanding of Complex Trauma can help us understand the underlying causes of so many of the disorders our clients and friends are struggling with.  In addition, we might be able to address some of the social challenges of our time by introducing a trauma-informed perspective.  What if we could help individuals dealing with mental health issues while the same time as helping communities effected by social challenges like substance abuse, systemic injustice and violence?

For us in the trauma world, this brings great hope.

Now that C-PSTD has been officially recognized, the next step is to finding treatments that are specifically geared to addressing Complex Trauma. 

While research on this is still in its infancy, we at the NARM Training Institute are buoyed by clinical reports and early research demonstrating how effective the NeuroAffective Relational Model (NARM) is in resolving attachment, relational and developmental trauma.  We have trained thousands of mental health clinicians throughout North America and Europe, and are rapidly expanding our NARM training programs throughout the world.

To learn more about this revolutionary method to treat this paradigm-shifting diagnosis, please visit our website at:

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