Somatic symptom disorder in dermatology

James L. Levenson, Aditi A. Sharma, Alex Ortega Loayza

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Somatic symptom disorder (SSD) is defined by the prominence of somatic symptoms associated with abnormal thoughts, feelings, and behaviors related to the symptoms, resulting in significant distress and impairment. Individuals with these disorders are more commonly encountered in primary care and other medical settings, including dermatology practice, than in psychiatric and other mental health settings. What defines the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors as abnormal is that they are excessive, that is, out of proportion to other patients with similar somatic symptoms, and that they result in significant distress and impairment. SSD may occur with or without the presence of a diagnosable dermatologic disorder. When a dermatologic disorder is present, SSD should be considered when the patient is worrying too much about his or her skin, spending too much time and energy on it, and especially if the patient complains of many nondermatologic symptoms in addition. The differential diagnosis includes other psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety disorders, delusions of parasitosis, and body dysmorphic disorder. This paper describes SSD and its applicability in dermatologic practice, with illustrative cases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)246-251
Number of pages6
JournalClinics in Dermatology
Volume35
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2017

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Dermatology
Psychiatry
Emotions
Body Dysmorphic Disorders
Delusions
Anxiety Disorders
Medically Unexplained Symptoms
Primary Health Care
Mental Health
Differential Diagnosis
Depression
Skin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology

Cite this

Somatic symptom disorder in dermatology. / Levenson, James L.; Sharma, Aditi A.; Ortega Loayza, Alex.

In: Clinics in Dermatology, Vol. 35, No. 3, 01.05.2017, p. 246-251.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Levenson, James L. ; Sharma, Aditi A. ; Ortega Loayza, Alex. / Somatic symptom disorder in dermatology. In: Clinics in Dermatology. 2017 ; Vol. 35, No. 3. pp. 246-251.
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