Abnormal Ch 7

Abnormal Ch 7 - ABNORMAL CHAPTER 7: Somatoform &...

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In addition to disorders covered earlier, two other kinds of disorders are commonly associated with stress and anxiety: Somatoform disorders Dissociative disorders Somatoform disorders are problems that appear to be physical or medical but are due to psychosocial factors Unlike psychophysiological disorders, in which psychosocial factors interact with physical factors to produce genuine physical ailments and damage, somatoform disorders are psychological disorders masquerading as physical problems Dissociative disorders are syndromes that feature major losses or changes in memory, consciousness, and identity, but do not have physical causes Unlike dementia and other neurological disorders, these patterns are, like somatoform disorders, due almost entirely to psychosocial factors The somatoform and dissociative disorders have much in common: Both occur in response to traumatic or ongoing stress Both are viewed as forms of escape from stress A number of individuals suffer from both a somatoform and a dissociative disorder Somatoform Disorders When a physical illness has no apparent medical cause, physicians may suspect a somatoform disorder People with a somatoform disorder do not consciously want or purposely produce their symptoms They believe their problems are genuinely medical There are two main types of somatoform disorders: Hysterical somatoform disorders Preoccupation somatoform disorders Hysterical Somatoform Disorders : suffer actual changes in physical functioning Conversion disorder In this disorder, a psychosocial conflict or need is converted into dramatic physical symptoms that affect voluntary or sensory functioning Symptoms often seem neurological, such as paralysis, blindness, or loss of feeling Most conversion disorders begin between late childhood and young adulthood They are diagnosed in women twice as often as in men They usually appear suddenly and are thought to be rare Somatization disorder
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-- People with somatization disorder have numerous long-lasting physical ailments that have little or no organic basis Also known as Briquet’s syndrome To receive a diagnosis, a patient must have multiple ailments that include several pain symptoms, gastrointestinal symptoms, a sexual symptom, and a neurological symptom Patients usually go from doctor to doctor seeking relief Patients often describe their symptoms in dramatic and exaggerated terms Many also feel anxious and depressed Between 0.2% and 2% of all women in the U.S. experience a somatization disorder per year (compared with less than 0.2% of men) The disorder often runs in families and begins between adolescence and late adulthood This disorder typically lasts much longer than a conversion disorder, typically for many years Symptoms may fluctuate over time but rarely disappear completely without psychotherapy
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This note was uploaded on 05/14/2008 for the course PSYCH 107 taught by Professor Bluhm during the Spring '07 term at Allegheny.

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Abnormal Ch 7 - ABNORMAL CHAPTER 7: Somatoform &...

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