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Dsm-iv hypochondriasis in primary care

  • Author(s): Escobar, JI
  • Gara, M
  • Waitzkin, H
  • Silver, RC
  • Holman, A
  • Compton, W
  • et al.
Abstract

The object of this study was to assess the prevalence and correlates of the DSM-IV diagnosis of hypochondriasis in a primary care setting. A large sample (N = 1456) of primary care users was given a structured interview to make diagnoses of mood, anxiety, and somatoform disorders and estimate levels of disability. The prevalence of hypochondriasis (DSM-IV) was about 3%. Patients with this disorder had higher levels of medically unexplained symptoms (abridged somatization) and were more impaired in their physical functioning than patients without the disorder. Of the various psychopathologies examined, major depressive syndromes were the most frequent among patients with hypochondriasis. Interestingly, unlike somatization disorder, hypochondriasis was not related to any demographic factor. Hypochondriasis is a relatively rare condition in primary care that is largely separable from somatization disorder but seems closely intertwined with the more severe depressive syndromes.

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