How is somatic symptom disorder diagnosed?
Diagnosing somatic symptom disorder can be very difficult, because people with the disorder are convinced their symptoms and feelings of distress mean they have an illness.
When symptoms appear, the doctor will begin her evaluation with a complete history and physical exam. If she finds no physical reason for the symptoms, She might refer the person to a psychiatrist or psychologist, health care professionals who are specially trained to diagnose and treat mental illnesses.
The psychiatrist or psychologist makes a diagnosis based on his assessment of the person's attitude and behavior, and the fact that physical illness has been ruled out as the cause of the symptoms. The psychiatrist or psychologist may administer a personality assessment to confirm the diagnosis of somatic symptom disorder.
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