Are very dramatic about what they're feeling. But, the symptoms are not talked about in a clear way.
Visit more than one doctor for to get a diagnosis or get treated for the same problems.
Have test results that don't explain their symptoms or confirm an illness exists.
It is important to note that people with SSD are not making these problems up or pretending to be sick.
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and health history. Your answers and a physical exam may point to SSD.
There are no specific tests to determine if a person has SSD. A diagnosis is based on:
One or more symptoms that are severe enough to interfere with daily life
Excessive thoughts, feelings, or actions linked to symptoms or concerns about health by one or more of these:
Persistent thoughts about the seriousness of symptoms
Persistent worry about symptoms or overall health
Using too much time and energy thinking about symptoms or overall health
The goal is to make help you learn to control what you feel. It will also help you with your work and social life. Your doctor will help you find the best way to do this. Find a doctor who cares about your issues and will help you.
Common methods are:
Psychotherapy—To help you find ways to deal with stressful or painful issues.
Cognitive behavioral therapy
—To help you learn to handle stress. You will change how you think. This will help you gain control of your feelings.
Medicines—To treat other mental health problems.
There is no way to prevent SSD since the cause is unknown.
Somatic symptom disorder. Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: https://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/psychiatric-disorders/somatic-symptom-and-related-disorders/somatic-symptom-disorder. Updated January 2018. Accessed August 31, 2018.
Last reviewed May 2018 by
EBSCO Medical Review Board
Adrian Preda, MD
Last Updated: 8/31/2018
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