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Psychosomatic medicine

 

Psychosomatic medicine

Psychosomatic medicine is an interdisciplinary medical field exploring the relationships among social, psychological, and behavioral factors on bodily processes and quality of life in humans and animals.

The academic forebear of the modern field of behavioral medicine and a part of the practice of consultation-liaison psychiatry, psychosomatic medicine integrates interdisciplinary evaluation and management involving diverse specialties including psychiatry, psychology, neurology, internal medicine, surgery, allergy, dermatology and psychoneuroimmunology. Clinical situations where mental processes act as a major factor affecting medical outcomes are areas where psychosomatic medicine has competence.[1]

Contents

  • History of psychosomatics 1
  • Psychosomatic disorders 2
  • Connotations of the term "psychosomatic illness" 3
  • Treatment 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7

History of psychosomatics

In the medieval Islamic world the Persian psychologist-physicians Ahmed ibn Sahl al-Balkhi (d. 934) and Haly Abbas (d. 994) developed an early understanding of illness that was due to the interaction of the mind and the body. They realized how a patient's physiology and psychology can have an effect on one another. They found correlations between patients who were physically and mentally healthy and between those who were physically and mentally ill.[2]

In the beginnings of the 20th century,

  • Mind-Body Medicine: An Overview, US National Institutes of Health, Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine
  • NIH
  • American Psychosomatic Society
    • Psychosomatic Medicine, journal of the American Psychosomatic Society

External links

  1. ^ Levenson, James L. (2006). Essentials of Psychosomatic Medicine. American Psychiatric Press Inc.  
  2. ^ Nurdeen Deuraseh and Mansor Abu Talib (2005), "Mental health in Islamic medical tradition", The International Medical Journal 4 (2), p. 76-79.
  3. ^ Asaad, Ghazi (1996). Psychosomatic Disorders: Theoretical and Clinical Aspects. Brunner-Mazel. pp. X, 129–130.  
  4. ^ Erwin, Edward (2002). The Freud Encyclopedia: Theory, Therapy and Culture. Routledge. pp. 245–246.  
  5. ^ Sarno, John (2006). The Divided Mind. ReganBooks.  
  6. ^ "GI Consult: Perforated Peptic Ulcer". Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  7. ^ Melmed, Raphael N. (2001). Mind, Body and Medicine: An Integrative Text. Oxford University Press Inc, USA. pp. 191–192.  
  8. ^ Skumin V A Borderline mental disorders in chronic diseases of the digestive system in children and adolescents. Zhurnal nevropatologii i psikhiatrii imeni SS Korsakova Moscow Russia 1952 (1991), Volume: 91, Issue: 8, Pages: 81-84 PubMed: 1661526
  9. ^ Skumin, VA (1982). Непсихотические нарушения психики у больных с приобретёнными пороками сердца до и после операции (обзор). [Nonpsychotic mental disorders in patients with acquired heart defects before and after surgery (review)]. Zhurnal nevropatologii i psikhiatrii imeni S.S. Korsakova (in Russian) 82 (11): 130–5.  
  10. ^ I. H. Treasaden, Basant K. Puri, P. J. Laking (2002). Textbook of Psychiatry. Churchill Livingstone. p. 7.  
  11. ^ Greco, Monica (1998). Illness as a Work of Thought: Foucauldian Perspective on Psychosomatics. Routledge. pp. 1–3, 112–116.  
  12. ^ Wise TN (March 2008). "Update on consultation-liaison psychiatry (psychosomatic medicine)". Curr Opin Psychiatry 21 (2): 196–200.  

References

See also

Psychosomatic medicine is considered a subspecialty of the fields of psychiatry and neurology. Medical treatments and psychotherapy are used to treat psychosomatic disorders.[12]

Treatment

Psychosomatic medicine is not to be confused with the demotic and scientifically incorrect use of the phrase "psychosomatic illness," particularly the influence the mind has over physical processes — including the manifestations of International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems. The field of psychosomatic medicine fell into disrepute clinically due to this incorrect use of this term, which was largely due to the influence of psychoanalytic theory on psychiatric physicians and the inaccurate application by non-specialists in the first part of the 20th century who considered this form of illness to be akin to malingering, thereby further harming the sufferer.[11] For this reason, among others, the field of Behavioral Medicine has taken over much of the remit of Psychosomatic Medicine in practice and there exist large areas of overlap in the scientific research.

Connotations of the term "psychosomatic illness"

Addressing such factors is the remit of the applied field of behavioral medicine. In modern society, psychosomatic aspects of illness are often attributed to stress[10] making the remediation of stress one important factor in the development, treatment, and prevention of psychosomatic illness.

However, while it is necessary to identify if an illness has a physical basis, it is recognized more and more that the effort to identify disorders as purely physical or mixed psychosomatic is increasingly obsolete as almost all physical illness have mental factors that determine their onset, presentation, maintenance, susceptibility to treatment, and resolution.[8][9]

It is still difficult to classify some disorders as purely physical, mixed psychosomatic, or purely somatoform. One example is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) that was considered formerly as having purely mental causes, while subsequent research showed significant differences in the behaviour of the gut in IBS patients. On the other hand, there are no actual structural changes in IBS patients and research shows that stress and emotions are still significant factors in causing IBS.[7]

For instance, while peptic ulcer was once thought of as being purely caused by stress, later research revealed that Helicobacter pylori caused 80% of ulcers. However 4 out of 5 people colonised with Helicobacter pylori do not develop ulcers, and an expert panel convened by the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research concluded that ulcers are not merely an infectious disease and that mental factors do play a significant role. One likelihood is that stress diverts energy away from the immune system, thereby stress promotes Helicobacter pylori infection in the body.[6]

Some physical diseases are believed to have a mental component derived from the stresses and strains of everyday living. This is the case, for example, of lower back pain and high blood pressure, which appear to be partly related to stresses in everyday life.[5] Psychiatry has found it difficult until relatively recently to distinguish somatoform disorders, disorders in which mental factors are the sole cause of a physical illness, from psychosomatic disorders, disorders in which mental factors play a significant role in the development, expression, or resolution of a physical illness.

Psychosomatic disorders

Since the 1970s, due to the work of Jakob von Uexküll has been found useful as an approach to describe psychosomatic phenomena.

[4]

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