Hypochondriasis is a true disorder that is a rare and difficult study of psychopathology. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR) categorizes hypochondriasis under Somatoform Disorders. The newest manual, Diagnostic Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), has removed the secluded hypochondriasis disorder and combined it with somatization disorder and pain disorder. This change was due to frequent overlapping of hypochondriasis, somatization disorder, and pain disorder. However, most of the information discussed in this paper pertains to the DSM-IV-TR. A description of all the signs and symptoms of hypochondriasis is given, along with causative factors, the criteria needed for an accurate diagnosis from the DSM-IV-TR and the DSM-5 manuals, and different treatment options that are available. Statistical information on a current study about hypochondriac patients and psychiatric comorbidity is also provided. Concluding the paper describes the importance of others, possibly loved ones, to point out hypochondriac behaviors in order to get the proper help.
Wow! They are such a hypochondriac! This is a phrase that is all too common to the general population. Many people loosely use this term to describe someone that has multiple medical issues, or at least one that states they have multiple medical issues. Hypochondriasis is a true disorder that is a rare and difficult study of psychopathology.
The DSM-IV-TR categorizes Hypochondriasis with Somatoform Disorders. It is described as a long-term preoccupation with anxiety and fear of having, or the idea that one has, a serious disease based on the person’s misinterpretation of bodily symptoms or functions (American Psychiatric Association, 2000). In other words, “a festered pimple is most likely a...