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Health Anxiety Are you plagued by fears about your body or health? Are you suffering from Health Anxiety? Please check other sub-forums first to see if your problem should be posted there instead. E.G. the IBS forum or the medication forum or the symptoms forum.
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  #1  
Old 23-06-09, 14:58
Linny Linny is offline
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difference between hypochondria and somatization disorder?

does anyone know ?
is hypochondria the same as health anxiety? are they all the same thing?
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  #2  
Old 23-06-09, 16:15
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agent orange agent orange is offline
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Re: difference between hypochondria and somatization disorder?

yes I do know, because I have been given the diagnosis of Undifferentiated Somatoform Disorder/Hypochondriasis. Check out my thread on the matter and may'be that will help you. U.S.D has physiological sensations etc that come out because of stress/anxiety. Why do you need to know? You can have both things/health anxiety I believe is the same as Hypochondriasis, with A somatoform being similiar. Somatoform is really all in the head but of course we know it's not. I too have seen numerous doctors had these tests and they think I am suffering from this and the tiredness...
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Old 23-06-09, 18:49
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itoldyouiwasill itoldyouiwasill is offline
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Re: difference between hypochondria and somatization disorder?

Whilst classified as an anxiety disorder USD is basically a clever name for having physical symptoms that cannot be traced to an organic condition. The symptoms are often thought to be of a somatic anxiety (ie physical anxiety) origin but there is no requirement for this. USD was a diagnosis designed to provide relief to a patient as it is easier for a patient to accept a disorder rather than a non diagnosis.

Hypochondria basically has a few strict requirements for diagnosis, I don't think there are any sufferers from true hypochondria on many anxiety forums. One of the main defining elements of hypochondria is that the sufferer can be totally convinced they are ill without actually suffering any symptoms nor having any subjective and/or objective evidence of any illness.

Health anxiety is generally understood to be the obsession and rumination on physical symptoms and subsequent over catastrophisation of these symptoms. The symptoms are often somatic in nature and often explainable within a somatic anxiety framework but the symptoms can be physical (ie a trapped nerve) but can be over catastrophised (ie the trapped nerve is actually undiagnosed MS). The main difference between hypochondria and health anxiety is that the health anxiety sufferer feels able to present evidence to support the belief that have an illness/disease (regardless of validity) whilst a hypochondriac remains convinced without the need of any supporting evidence.

Hope this helps.

Last edited by itoldyouiwasill; 23-06-09 at 18:58.
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Old 23-06-09, 19:39
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rosepetal rosepetal is offline
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Re: difference between hypochondria and somatization disorder?

I used to have quite severe hypochondria - was actually 'diagnosed' with cancer phobia. It's one of the first ways my illness became apparant.

It's mostly eased off now, but I do have somatisation difficulties, and have done all my life. There is a lot of somatisation - difficult, unbearable feelings going 'into' the body rather than being expressed emotionally - in my family. Depth psychotherapy is starting to help me heal it though. 'The only way out is through' - bringing the feelings to conscious awareness and expressing them.

My cancer phobia was symbolic of how I felt feelings were 'eating me up inside and destroying me'. The hypochondria was a somatisation of my anxieties. [does that make sense?!]
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Old 23-06-09, 19:47
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itoldyouiwasill itoldyouiwasill is offline
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Re: difference between hypochondria and somatization disorder?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rosepetal View Post
I used to have quite severe hypochondria - was actually 'diagnosed' with cancer phobia. It's one of the first ways my illness became apparant.

It's mostly eased off now, but I do have somatisation difficulties, and have done all my life. There is a lot of somatisation - difficult, unbearable feelings going 'into' the body rather than being expressed emotionally - in my family. Depth psychotherapy is starting to help me heal it though. 'The only way out is through' - bringing the feelings to conscious awareness and expressing them.

My cancer phobia was symbolic of how I felt feelings were 'eating me up inside and destroying me'. The hypochondria was a somatisation of my anxieties. [does that make sense?!]
Totally!

It is good that you had that insight...it is really amazing just how powerful somatisation is anh how our regressed emotional thoughts etc can find an output through physical symptoms.

Interesting you mentioned about cancer and eating you up when the reality was that it was your unexpressed emotions that were eating you up...have you ever heard of a concept called organ language?
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Old 24-06-09, 07:18
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agent orange agent orange is offline
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Re: difference between hypochondria and somatization disorder?

I am just having difficulties in letting go that I don't have an illness because I truely believe that I do, I believe that all these symptoms are related to an underlying cause that the doctors have not found.All my tests came back negative for M.S but I have been told that 5% of people have no reports of anything in the brain when tests come back for m.s, so I am clinging onto that and therefore it is very difficult to let it go. (Viscious circle)
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Old 24-06-09, 07:28
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rosepetal rosepetal is offline
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Re: difference between hypochondria and somatization disorder?

It sounds like your anxiety likes to be 'fed', agent orange. What would it mean not to feed the anxiety monster?

itoldyouiwasill, no, I've not heard of that concept, at least by that name.
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Old 24-06-09, 20:08
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agent orange agent orange is offline
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Re: difference between hypochondria and somatization disorder?

you may be right Rose. I will be seeing a cpn again to see what is best for me. My doctor is wonderful, but cannot do anything else for me, as mental health is not his field. So I wait....
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