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J Psychosom Res. 2004 Apr;56(4):455-60.

Pharmacotherapy of somatoform disorders.

Author information

  • Department of Psychiatry, Division of Therapeutics, Somatic Disorders Program, New York State Psychiatric Institute, Columbia University, 1051 Riverside Drive, Unit 69, New York, NY 10032, USA. bafl@columbia.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This paper reviews the published literature on the pharmacologic management of somatoform disorders.

METHODS:

Using Medline, the author identified all articles published between 1970 and 2003 on this topic, selecting the best-designed studies for inclusion.

RESULTS:

The review reveals that patients with the obsessional cluster of somatoform disorders (hypochondriasis and body dysmorphic disorder [BDD]) respond well to serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SRIs). Less is known about the pharmacologic responsiveness of patients with the primarily somatic cluster of somatoform disorders (somatization, pain), a patient group that is common in the health provider's office.

CONCLUSIONS:

Improvements in the design of future clinical trials are needed. A particular focus needs to be applied to study the neglected area of the pharmacologic treatment of syndromal and subsyndromal somatization and pain disorders.

Copyright 2004 Elsevier Inc.

PMID:
15094032
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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