Somatic Symptom Disorders Part 3: Fallacy of medically unexplained thinking

Jeffrey P. Staab, M.D., Mayo Clinic psychiatrist, discusses the responsibilities of psychologists, psychiatrists and primary care physicians in managing patients with functional and somatic symptom disorders. Dr. Staab explains why the idea of identifying disorders by medically unexplained symptoms is beginning to be expunged, and why this is being replaced by the concept that medical and psychiatric causes of physical symptoms must be assessed independently even when they occur together. Helping patients understand their symptoms and get better requires deserting these older concepts and embracing newer ideas of positively diagnosable, explainable and treatable somatic symptom conditions.


February 3, 2014

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Mayo Clinic