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Chapter 6&7

Abnormal Psych Ch. 6 & 7 Notes

Course Code
PSYC 2030U
Ronn Young

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Chapter 6 Somatoform & Dissociative Disorders
Somatoform Disorders Overview
Soma Meaning Body
Overly preoccupied with their health or body appearance
No identifiable medical condition causing the physical complaints
Types of DSM IV Somatoform Disorders
Conversion Disorder
Pain Disorder
Body Dysmorphic Disorder
Physical complaints without clear cause
o Severe anxiety focused on the possibility of having a serious
o Strong disease conviction
o Medical reassurance does not seem to help
o Steven Taylor, Clinical psychologist at UBC is well known for
work in this area
Good prevalence data are lacking
Onset at any age and runs in chronic course
Cognitive perceptual distortions
Familial history of illness
Challenge illness related misinterpretations
Provide more substantial and sensitive reassurance
Stress management and coping strategies

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Somatization Disorder
Extended history of physical complaints before age 30
Substantial impairment in social and occupational functioning
Concerned over symptoms themselves, not what they might mean
Symptoms becomes persons identity
Rare condition
Onset usually in adolescents
Most affects unmarried, low SES women
Runs a chronic course
Familial history of illness
Relation with antisocial personality disorder
Weak behavioural inhibition system

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No treatment exists with demonstrated effectiveness
Reduce the tendency to vist numerous medical specialists
Assign gatekeeper physician
Reduce supportive consequences of talk about physical symptoms
Conversion Disorder
Physical malfunctioning without and physical or organic pathology
Malfunctioning often involves sensory motor areas
Persons show La Belle indifference
Retain most normal functions without awareness of this ability
Rare condition with chronic intermittent course
Onset in adolescence mostly in females
More prevalent in lower SES, less educated groups
Not uncommon in religious groups
Freudian psychodynamic view is still popular
Emphasis on the role of trauma, conversion, and primary/
secondary gain
Detachment from the trauma and negative reinforcement seem
Similar to somatization disorder
Core stratgegy is attending to the trauma
Removal of sources of secondary gain
Reduce supportive consequences of talk about physical symptoms
Pain Disorders
Body Dysmorphic Disorder
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