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Re: 'Psychosomatic' is a doctor's way of saying 'I Dunno'.
May 4, 2006

I agree that the psychosomatic diagnosis is indeed valid in certain situations. In the three examples you mentioned, the patients each had one symptom and I agree that given the scenarios that diagnosis is justified.

On the other hand, when you've had 20 or 30 symptoms and they persist chronically for months and even years, is it still appropriate to use the 'psychosomatic' club just because the HIV test is negative. There's gotta be more physical conditions out there besides HIV doctor's can check for.

I guess we're all just a bunch of crazy nutbags.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

No, you're not "all just a bunch of crazy nutbags." Only some of you are. Yes, of course, there are "more physical conditions out there besides HIV that doctors can check for." But chances are you don't have Ebola, leprosy, Tourette's syndrome or Tropical sprue either. If you don't trust or believe your physician's assessment, get a second opinion. However, if both physicians feel your 20 or 30 chronically persistent "symptoms" do not have a physiological cause, psychosomatic illness is indeed a possibility you should consider.

Dr. Bob



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