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Semin Neurol. 2009 Jul;29(3):234-46. doi: 10.1055/s-0029-1223875. Epub 2009 Jun 23.

Somatoform disorders.

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  • 1Division of Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Neurology, Brown Medical School/Rhode Island Hospital, Providence, Rhode Island 02903, USA.


The fields of neurology and psychiatry were originally practiced as a unitary model. As the fields dichotomized patients into "organic" and "functional," patients with medically unexplained symptoms fell between the borderlands. Despite their significant prevalence, somatoform disorders (SDs) are grossly under-recognized and lack effective treatments. This article reviews diagnostic criteria, differential diagnoses, examination findings, and treatments for these disorders. A summary of advances in research in functional neuroimaging and treatment trials is also given.

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