People suffering from a somatization disorder often have multiple somatic symptoms (fullness) that cause discomfort or can cause significant problems in daily life. However, sometimes they may present only one severe sign and not several of them. In these cases, the most characteristic symptom is a pain.
Symptoms may be specific (e.g., localized pain) or relatively nonspecific (e.g., fatigue). Signs sometimes denote normal bodily sensations or discomfort that usually does not mean a serious illness.
The suffering of the person with somatization disorder is real
The person suffering from a somatization disorder your discomfort is authentic, whether or not it is explained medically. Thus, the symptoms may or may not be associated with another medical condition. In fact, often, these people have medical conditions along with the somatization disorder.
For example, a person could be severely disabled by the symptoms of a somatization disorder after uncomplicated myocardial infarction. This is true even if the myocardial infarction itself has not produced any disability. If there is another medical illness or a high risk of suffering from it, with this disease would be excessive in these people.
On the other hand, people with somatization disorder tend to have very high levels of concern for the condition. In this way, they unduly evaluate their bodily symptoms and consider them threatening, harmful or annoying. They often think the worst about their health.
Even when there is evidence that everything is going well in their health, some patients still fear that their symptoms are severe.
Health problems assume a central role in the life of the individual
In somatization disorder, health problems can imagine a central role in a person's life. These problems can end up becoming a feature of their identity and ultimately end up dominating interpersonal relationships.
People with somatization disorder often experience discomfort that focuses mainly on somatic symptoms and their meaning. When asked directly about their pain, some people also describe it about other aspects of their lives. Other people deny any source of distress other than somatic symptoms.
The quality of life is reduced in these people
Health-related quality of life is often affected by both the physical and the mental levels.
In somatization disorder, deterioration is characteristic and, when it is persistent, disability can result. In these cases, the patient often goes to consultation and even consult different specialists. However, this rarely alleviates their concerns.
These people often seem not to respond to medical interventions, and new interventions can aggravate the presentation of symptoms, entering a vicious circle. Some of these individuals seem unusually sensitive to the side effects of medications. Also, some feel that their medical evaluation and treatment have not been sufficient.