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Beginning the Treatment of Hypochondriasis

Beginning the Treatment of Hypochondriasis Abstract To the Editor.— Hypochondriasis may be defined as an undue concern that one suffers from a serious illness. The term as used here corresponds to the DSM-III1 category "Atypical Somatoform Disorder (Hypochondriasis)." (No cases of somatization disorder [Briquet's syndrome] were studied.) Hypochondriasis is common and notoriously difficult to treat. Offenkrantz and Tobin2 recommend that the therapist legitimize and dignify the patient's suffering by stating that he understands the patient's fears and by refraining from interpreting the suffering as psychological in origin.During the past six years, I have treated or supervised the treatment of 15 patients (aged 19 to 58 years) who were initially seen with hypochondriasis of one month's to 17 years' duration and thereby have empirically tested this proposal. A detailed account of 12 of these psychotherapies is given elsewhere.3 The findings from this experience are summarized here.The treatment of ten patients was successfully References 1. Task Force on Nomenclature and Statistics of the American Psychiatric Association: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders , ed 3. Washington, DC, American Psychiatric Association, 1977. 2. Offenkrantz W, Tobin A: Psychoanalytic psychotherapy , in Freedman DX, Dyrud JE (eds): American Handbook of Psychiatry , ed 2. New York, Basic Books Inc, 1975, vol 5, pp 183-205. 3. Galatzer-Levy R: The opening phase of the psychotherapy of hypochondriacal states . Int J Psychoanal Psychother , to be published. 4. Kohut H, Wolf E: The disorders of the self and their treatment: An outline . Int J Psychoanal 57:413-425, 1978. 5. Gedo J: Beyond Interpretation . New York, International Universities Press Inc, 1979. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Archives of General Psychiatry American Medical Association

Beginning the Treatment of Hypochondriasis

Beginning the Treatment of Hypochondriasis

Abstract

Abstract To the Editor.— Hypochondriasis may be defined as an undue concern that one suffers from a serious illness. The term as used here corresponds to the DSM-III1 category "Atypical Somatoform Disorder (Hypochondriasis)." (No cases of somatization disorder [Briquet's syndrome] were studied.) Hypochondriasis is common and notoriously difficult to treat. Offenkrantz and Tobin2 recommend that the therapist legitimize and dignify the patient's suffering by stating...
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Publisher
American Medical Association
Copyright
Copyright © 1980 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved.
ISSN
0003-990X
eISSN
1598-3636
DOI
10.1001/archpsyc.1980.01780210118015
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract To the Editor.— Hypochondriasis may be defined as an undue concern that one suffers from a serious illness. The term as used here corresponds to the DSM-III1 category "Atypical Somatoform Disorder (Hypochondriasis)." (No cases of somatization disorder [Briquet's syndrome] were studied.) Hypochondriasis is common and notoriously difficult to treat. Offenkrantz and Tobin2 recommend that the therapist legitimize and dignify the patient's suffering by stating that he understands the patient's fears and by refraining from interpreting the suffering as psychological in origin.During the past six years, I have treated or supervised the treatment of 15 patients (aged 19 to 58 years) who were initially seen with hypochondriasis of one month's to 17 years' duration and thereby have empirically tested this proposal. A detailed account of 12 of these psychotherapies is given elsewhere.3 The findings from this experience are summarized here.The treatment of ten patients was successfully References 1. Task Force on Nomenclature and Statistics of the American Psychiatric Association: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders , ed 3. Washington, DC, American Psychiatric Association, 1977. 2. Offenkrantz W, Tobin A: Psychoanalytic psychotherapy , in Freedman DX, Dyrud JE (eds): American Handbook of Psychiatry , ed 2. New York, Basic Books Inc, 1975, vol 5, pp 183-205. 3. Galatzer-Levy R: The opening phase of the psychotherapy of hypochondriacal states . Int J Psychoanal Psychother , to be published. 4. Kohut H, Wolf E: The disorders of the self and their treatment: An outline . Int J Psychoanal 57:413-425, 1978. 5. Gedo J: Beyond Interpretation . New York, International Universities Press Inc, 1979.

Journal

Archives of General PsychiatryAmerican Medical Association

Published: Aug 1, 1980

References