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Somatic manifestation of distress: functional somatic syndromes and somatic symptom disorders

Edited by: Dr Mutsuhiro Nakao

Somatic complaints are often related to chronic stress-related illnesses, but the diagnoses are not obvious in all cases.  In some cases, patients could be classified with functional somatic syndromes. The syndromes are defined as several related disease-conditions that are characterized more by symptoms, suffering, and disability than by structural or functional abnormality. Typically, the functional somatic syndromes include irritable bowel syndrome, tension type headache, chronic fatigue syndrome, and fibromyalgia, all of which are frequently observed in psychosomatic medicine clinics. Also, the somatic complaints which are not fully explained by a medical condition could be diagnosed as somatic symptom disorders from a view of psychiatry. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), the symptoms must cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other area of functioning. In this series in BioPsychoSocial Medicine, we present the latest findings on somatic manifestation of distress, represented by functional somatic syndromes (internal medicine), somatic symptom disorders (psychiatry), and other stress-related phenomenon.

The Editor of the series declares no competing interests.

  1. Research

    Brief internet-based cognitive behavior therapy program with a supplement drink improved anxiety and somatic symptoms in Japanese workers

    Self-help cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) is a useful approach for the treatment of psychological problems. Recent research on the effectiveness of self-help internet-based CBT (ICBT) indicates that the parad...

    Kentaro Shirotsuki, Yuji Nonaka, Jiro Takano, Keiichi Abe, So-ichiro Adachi, Shohei Adachi and Mutsuhiro Nakao

    BioPsychoSocial Medicine 2017 11:25

    Published on: 1 September 2017

  2. Research

    The relationship between salivary amylase and the physical and psychological changes elicited by continuation of autogenic training in patients with functional somatic syndrome

    The aim of this study was to clarify the changes in biological measures during autogenic training (AT) sessions and the relationship between these biological measures and the changes in physical and psychologi...

    Tadashi Kiba, Tetsuya Abe, Kenji Kanbara, Fumie Kato, Sadanobu Kawashima, Yukie Saka, Kazumi Yamamoto, Yasuyuki Mizuno, Junji Nishiyama and Mikihiko Fukunaga

    BioPsychoSocial Medicine 2017 11:17

    Published on: 28 June 2017