[Skip to Content]
Access to paid content on this site is currently suspended due to excessive activity being detected from your IP address 35.175.121.230. Please contact the publisher to request reinstatement.
[Skip to Content Landing]
Article
March 16, 1984

The Somatizing Disorders: Illness as a Way of Life

Author Affiliations

The University of Chicago

JAMA. 1984;251(11):1482-1483. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03340350070037

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.

Abstract

Those of us who provide medical care services continue to be perplexed, fascinated, annoyed, and discouraged by an old phenomenon: physical illness behaviors by patients who have nonexistent or insignificant physical diseases. Although this group of patients, who usually have psychiatric disorders, is relatively small, they receive a large proportion of nonpsychiatric medical care resources. We psychiatrists and behavioral scientists have described these patients and ventured to understand and treat them. However, the knowledge base remains piecemeal, scattered, idiosyncratic, and lacking a unifying perspective.

Charles V. Ford, MD, Professor of Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn, has contributed a substantive work by exhaustively gathering and reviewing the literature on the somatizing disorders. Rather than recite others' descriptions and impressions, he synthesizes this information with modern-day psychiatric nosology. Moreover, Dr Ford, a clinician who works as a consultation-liaison psychiatrist to medically and surgically ill patients, acknowledgingly offers his point of view

×