Somatoform Disorder Analysis

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Background Somatoform disorders, as defined on states, “Any of a group of psychological disorders (as body dysmorphic disorder or hypochondriasis) marked by physical complaints for which no organic or physiological explanation is found and for which there is a strong likelihood that psychological factors are involved.” So what does this mean? Basically, somatoform disorders include mental factors that are often caused by physical symptoms, but no physical source or psychological cause. The symptoms therefore are imagined, but that does not bring light to the situation that it causes distress and can often be long-term (Kenny, 2011). The DSM-V, the Diagnostic and Statistical manual released in May of 2013 now classifies it as, “Somatic Symptom and Related Disorders.” This new name groups together many categories of disorders linked to somatoform disorders. Different disorders include; somatization, hypochondriasis, conversion, body dysmorphic and pain disorder (Kenny, 2011). DSM-V The DSM-V plays a huge role in the classification and treatment of somatoform disorders. It was not until this model that somatoform was not just one category, but had multiple sub-categories under it. With all of this being said, the DSM-V has gotten multiple hits of hard criticism that the new edition has a lack of scientific evidence for specific classifications, and unclear boundaries between every day stressors, and a classified “illness.” However, with constant progress, new information, new disorders and treatments, the DSM, no matter what version, will always take criticism for one thing or another (McCarron, 2013). Going back to the DSM-4, which is still used by many in the psychology world, classified somatization as needi... ... middle of paper ... ... the patient complained about, they needed to avoid diagnostic procedures and surgeries unless previously indicated, and finally they had to refrain from making statements about their symptoms being, “all in their head” (Woolfolk, 2010). Conclusion In conclusion, somatoform disorders must be treated with caution. Upsetting a patient or even digging too far to find information or a cause of a disease could potentially make the patient even worse. Those professionals using the DSM-V on a regular basis must be aware the changes and the progression the DSM will continue to make. Different symptoms may include pain, gastrointestinal complaints, sexual symptoms and neurological problems. Different disorders include somatization, hypochondriasis, conversion, body dysmorphic disorder, pseudocyesis, and both pain and undifferentiated somatization in conjunction with PTSD.

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that somatoform disorders include mental factors that are often caused by physical symptoms, but no physical source or psychological cause. the dsm-v now classifies it as "somatic symptom and related disorders."
  • Explains that somatoform disorders are rarely found in males in the united states, but widening the search will show that the percentages are higher.
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