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Psychosomatic or psychogenic illness refers to illness or symptoms of illness with no known physical cause, which is believed to be the entirely result of psychological factors, with no underlying biological cause. Psychosomatic medicine refers to the impact of medical illness on the minds, and the impact of psychological disorders on the body.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and fibromyalgia are sometimes incorrectly referred to as psychomatic illnesses, or alternatively as medically unexplained physical symptoms (usually meaning partly physiological), by a number of clinicians or researchers, both in academic publications and the mainstream press, despite being classified as a neurological disease, and musculoskeletal disease respectively.
Psychologization[edit | edit source]
A number of different diseases were assumed to be psychomatic before medical science found biological evidence of abnormalities, this process of psychologization has previously affected patients with many different illnesses, including Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis, Lyme disease and AIDS. Significant harm can be caused by psychosomatic assumptions of an illness, in the case of AIDS, patients with AIDS were allowed to donate blood because it was assumed that no physical disease was present, which resulted in AIDS infections in people receiving the blood.
Notable articles[edit | edit source]
- 1997, Chronic fatigue syndrome--a disease entity or an unspecified psychosomatic disorder? (in German)(Abstract - in English)
- 2017, Contesting the psychiatric framing of ME/CFS(Full text)
Letters, articles and talks[edit | edit source]
- 2000, Functional somatic syndromes
- 2013, Disease-modifying therapies for nonrelapsing multiple sclerosis: Absence of evidence does not constitute evidence of absence
See also[edit | edit source]
- Functional somatic syndrome
- Ethical issues
- Martha Mitchell Effect
- Medically unexplained physical symptoms
- Functional Neurological Symptom Disorder
- Bodily distress syndrome
References[edit | edit source]
- "An Unhealthy Mind Can Lead to An Unhealthy Brain. Let's Not Forget That". www.universitytimes.ie. Feb 2019. Retrieved Apr 10, 2019.
- Levenson, JL, ed. (2005). The American psychiatric publishing textbook of psychosomatic medicine. Arlington, VA, US: American Psychiatric Publishing, Inc.
- World Health Organization. "ICD-10 Version:2016". icd.who.int. Retrieved Apr 10, 2019.
- English, T. L. (Feb 15, 2000). "Functional somatic syndromes". Annals of Internal Medicine. 132 (4): 329. ISSN 0003-4819. PMID 10681297.
Lupus, multiple sclerosis, AIDS, and Lyme disease suffered similar fates before “tissue evidence” was available. Patients were belittled by armchair speculators masquerading as scientists. Who among us believes this was helpful? A simple “I don’t know” would have been better than specious speculation.
The authors confuse absence of evidence with evidence of absence. They are not the same. Absence of evidence may reflect insufficient research, inadequate technology, poor methods, flawed paradigms, closed minds, or lack of clinical experience; for example, in 1980, there was no clear evidence that AIDS was viral—blood products were considered “safe.”
- Albus, C. (Dec 1997). "[Chronic fatigue syndrome--a disease entity or an unspecified psychosomatic disorder?]". Zeitschrift Fur Arztliche Fortbildung Und Qualitatssicherung (in German). 91 (8): 717–721. ISSN 1431-7621. PMID 9487622.
- Spandler, Helen; Allen, Meg (Aug 16, 2017). "Contesting the psychiatric framing of ME/CFS" (PDF). Social Theory & Health. 16 (2): 127–141. doi:10.1057/s41285-017-0047-0. ISSN 1477-8211.
- Dunn, J. (Oct 31, 2013). "Disease-modifying therapies for nonrelapsing multiple sclerosis: Absence of evidence does not constitute evidence of absence". Neurology: Clinical Practice. 3 (6): 515–518. doi:10.1212/01.cpj.0000436215.95884.89. ISSN 2163-0402.
Myalgic encephalomyelitis or chronic fatigue syndrome