It is important to have a supportive relationship with a health care provider. You should have only one primary care provider to avoid having too many tests and procedures.
The health care provider should tell you that you do not have a disease, but that continued medical follow-up will help control the symptoms. People with hypochondria feel real distress, so their symptoms should not be denied or challenged.
Antidepressants such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) can help reduce the worry and physical symptoms of this disorder.
Finding a mental health provider who has experience treating this disorder with talk therapy (psychotherapy) can be helpful. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), a kind of talk therapy, can help you deal with your pain. During therapy, you will learn:
The disorder is usually long-term (chronic), unless psychological factors or mood and anxiety disorders are treated.
Call your health care provider if you or your child has symptoms of hypochondria.
Greenberg DB, Braun IM, Cassem NH. Functional somatic symptoms and somatoform disorders. In: Stern TA, Rosenbaum JF, Fava M, Biederman J, Rauch SL, eds. Massachusetts General Hospital Comprehensive Clinical Psychiatry. 1st ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier;2008: chap 24.
WitthÃ¶ft M, Hiller W. Psychological approaches to origins and treatments of somatoform disorders. Annu Rev Clin Psychol. 2010;6:257-283.
deGruy FV. The somatic patient. In: Rakel RE, ed. Textbook of Family Medicine. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier;2007:chap 61.
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