Does somatic symptom disorder really exist?

depressedpatientThe fifth edition of psychiatry’s official diagnostic manual, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-5), has gone to print with a new diagnosis included that could easily label millions of normal Americans as mentally ill.

“Somatic symptom disorder” is a new entity that the American Psychiatric Association would have us believe suddenly exists.  To merit the diagnosis a person need only report a single physical symptom that he or she finds distressing or disruptive to daily life for at least six months, along with just one of the following being true:

a) The person has disproportionate, persistent thoughts about the seriousness of their symptoms.

b) The person reports or displays a persistently high level of anxiety about his or her health or symptoms.

c) The person is devoting excessive time and energy to his or her symptoms or health concerns.

Mind you, studies by the American Psychiatric Association have already shown that 15 percent of folks with either cancer or heart disease would be diagnosed with this disorder, and 26 percent of those with irritable bowel syndrome or fibromyalgia.  What’s more, 7 percent of people who have no active medical diagnosis also could qualify.

Suddenly, being worried about your physical health in a way that a psychologist or psychiatrist or social worker considers “disproportionate” to your symptoms makes you mentally ill.  Or, devoting yourself to treating your medical illness in a way that a psychiatric nurse practitioner considers “excessive” makes you mentally ill. Or, questioning your first and second opinions about a complicated or atyptical case of migraines or colitis or sinusitis makes you psychiatrically disordered.

Not only can this stigmatize people who are diligent about (or even devoted to) optimizing their health in the face of an illness, but it can easily dissuade many from continuing to seek optimal medical remedies for murky or hard-to-treat or misdiagnosed medical conditions.  Because, with such imprecise diagnostic guidelines, the threshold for being labeled mentally ill is very low, indeed.  

Inventing this new diagnostic category does fit very well with the agenda of the pharmaceutical industry, however.  Because the millions of Americans who can now be labeled as suffering from “somatic symptom disorder,” it could be argued, will need anti-anxiety and sleep medication.  

And some enterprising drug company, no doubt, will fund a study showing its new chemical reduces symptoms in those people who supposedly have this new condition.  And the Food and Drug Administration will be pressed to bless that chemical with an “indication” that it be used for “somatic symptom disorder.”

Exactly how having somatic symptom disorder differs from being obsessive-compulsive, by the way, isn’t at all clear.  Nor is it clear how a patient labeled with somatic symptom disorder should be treated by physicians charged with curing physical illnesses.  The label may well suggest to them they need not follow up on a patient’s report of physical symptoms because they must be “in his head.”

What is clear is that this new diagnosis, invented by a committee at the American Psychiatric Association (which, sadly, has proudly presided over the near-decimation of most listening arts central to psychiatry), could cost untold millions of dollars by bringing folks worried about their health into psychiatric treatment for being worried, and onto medications for being worried.  

And, in those cases where their worry turns out to have been justified, and the label of mental illness turns out to have been cavalierly applied, it might just cost them their lives.

Read more:

This is outrageous. Tomorrow I am going in for blood work for Hypothyroidism, I know damn well I have it and have since 2006. The problem is my T3/T4 tests always show normal, now my eyes are hurting and so red I can barely function, a big sign of hypothyroidism, I’m gaining weight, cold, dizzy, very painful eyes, heart issues, all major pointers to hypothyroidism, lost my hair back in 2006 when this all started (it grew back). Anyway, this does worry me all the time, especially the heart involvement. Basically, the medical community it looks as though is teaming up with the Psychiatric numskulls and saying shut-up or be labeled. Which will eventually be, take this drug, there’s nothing wrong with you, or be labeled. Well, I refuse to go on drugs unless it is proven something is wrong with me. I know what is wrong, it’s hypothyroidism, but I cannot get treatment.


Comments on: "It appears we’re all about to be diagnosed" (29)

  1. Yes DSM also had being gay as mental illness
    They can label us how they want, but the truth
    Will eventually prevail ….many MD sufferers are professionals in the health field and try to
    Say we are all mentally I’ll will not stick…

  2. hi

    sorry about your thyroid. there are foods you can avoid and eat to help this as well supplements – have you looked intot his- i can give you info if you want it- i healed my hypo thryroid naturally – it can be done.

  3. How brilliant of them! Let’s see, how can we capitalize on the growing Morgellons pandemic without admitting it exists? Invent a new condition to conveniently pigeonhole, medicate and isolate sufferers. Very predictable to say the least.

    I guess they decided against recognizing M for what it is until the numbers reach the point where they can invent and sell another new (and useless) vaccine.

    Mr. C,, glad to see you are pursuing the thyroid issue. It is rampant, and especially so in the Morgellons community. Very complex and misunderstood issue. Hope you find this article helpful:

    Hypothyroidism Type II – Hidden Epidemic



    • Mr. Common Sense said:

      Thanks John. I printed the article. You can see why I worry about my heart (but I better not say that to loud or they might show up to drag me away to the asylum). I’ve been researching natural cures for it, if my blood work tomorrow doesn’t show anything wrong with T3/T4 then I go it alone, done with the medical folks.

      • Don’t be surprised if your blood work is normal… happens all the time.

        My wife had all the symptoms but normal blood work. I finally found an obgyn who understood the challenge and began working with her to eliminate the underlying causes; mineral deficiencies (especially magnesium and iodine) and xenoestrogen toxicity. He used glandular therapy to gently restore balance to her endocrine sytem. All symptoms disappeared within two months.

  4. dividing cricker said:

    MrC Check into Iodine and heart issues. There are several news articles about this new approach to heart “cures” using iodine. The thyroid has the entire blood of the body going through it every17 minutes . What happens is the thyroid gets loaded with bromide fluoride and other look alike minerals . When you start dosing / loading the body will clear the trash and start loading the thyroid. This loading will then start to dose the blood with iodine in a normal fashion. Diabetes is usually caused by a lack of iodine . My sister has diabetes and with some webs site info she started using iodine and her thyroid started working again . Her doctor was amazed ,hypothyroidism cured. This resulted in 25 lb weight loss and many other health benefits. We both take IOSOL seems the most healthful. DC About the theory were all crazy, I’ve worked for several Doctors. I could tell you stories about them that could prove that were very sane and all the politicians lawyer and doctors need to be put away. I could write a book !!!

    • Mr. Common Sense said:

      Thanks DC, I do have iodine. I have Iodoral and even some you can paint on your skin, problem is I have a reaction if I use too much, extreme headache just over my eyes is what it gives me. I guess I need to just keep doing it in very small doses and gradually build up over time, but it will take a long time. I wonder if my reaction to it is indicative to my being completely devoid of it?

    • dividing cricker said:

      I was checking into iodine and the heart, and found a web THE IODINE PROJECT it really covers a to z , very good site The heart seems to be a recurring issue with lyme disease.

  5. Reblogged this on PCOS Lady and commented:
    OMGosh! Another way to let your doctor, the drug companies, etc… get away with anything they wish to! For years now doctors are trained to treat symptoms “only”… Many docs only consider a few symptoms you have for a dx… ~ I also know for a fact when deemed mentally ill you and your family have a real hard time getting you un dx’d or out! 1st hand: A man i had legal care over was deemed mental by the hospital MD and psychiatrist… They never asked his symptoms, nor checked the drug levels in his body! Depakote was 3 points over the legal limit for the body! He was passing out at the end of every month spending a week in the hospital for 6 months… I told the blood doctor of our concerns, he was released that afternoon! I watched him have minor to severe stroke symptoms the last time… The scenario turned to a malpractice case set up… An atty congratulated me cause he could not get his mother out of the “mentally ill” grasp… * ALL SYMPTOMS COUNT * … Keep a journal on symptoms, calls, all tests run on you, etc… pertaining to “YOU”!

  6. Check out this link, by Dr Wilson a very common sense kina doc. If you have low body temperature, you have thyroid issues. Most people now days due to radiation and lack of iodine. I have it and take iodine drops. Don’t all into the medical quagmire, the thyroid meds only mask symptoms and give heart palpations. I know I have been there. Take your temperature is it below normal. Follow Dr Wilsons advice.
    The American Physichiatrist Assoicaiation could fina a mental illness in everyone who is awake.

  7. Mr. Common Sense said:

    By the way, I had to create a new category when I posted this article, I called it “Quackery” but probably should have labeled this one “Witchcraft” because that is what the “American Psychiatric Association” is turning into …

  8. barb miller said:

    for those who believe they have hypothyroidism, here are some natural things that might help and some foods to avoid. funny, my friend in california thinks she has it too. they have some other interesting info here.

    “Foods for Hypothyroidism
    Foods rich in the amino acid Tyrosine are extremely beneficial as it joins with iodine in the thyroid to produce the hormone thyroxine. These foods are almonds, bananas, lima beans and avocado, yogurt and lowfat milk. Eat selenium-rich foods like brazil nuts, cooked broccoli, garlic, brewer’s yeast, onion and black strap molasses. Make sure you eat those foods rich in both Tyrosine and Selenium, like meat, poultry, and seafood such as tuna and salmon.

    Foods to Avoid for Thyroid Health
    There are certain foods that can actually inhibit the thyroid gland’s hormone production. Raw broccoli, cauliflower and other cruciferous vegetables such as rutabagas and turnips should be avoided, especially if you have untreated hypothyroidism with strong symptoms. Soy has been linked to contributing to hypothyroidism, so you would be advised to avoid ingesting tofu and other unfermented soy products. Since, soy and soy products are found in many processed foods, you would do well to check labels before eating such foods.

    Vitamins and Minerals for Hypothyroidism
    Vitamin B complex supplements help to balance thyroid function. Vitamin C and calcium are also known to benefit the thyroid. Vitamins E and A have been known to help. Vitamin B12 is often low in hypothyroidism and should be supplemented. Iron, magnesium and iodine are often taken supplementally to benefit thyroid function and the way the body uses thyroid hormones.”

  9. Hypothyroidism: Under the newer guidelines, however, a TSH above 3.0 could be diagnosed as hypothyroid… Per: … I googled: hypothyroidism criteria

  10. dividing cricker said:

    MrC has three videos , watch them and you will see how to balance your minerals. I had never seen this idea anywhere.

  11. I have this sympotom since 2006, something is totally wrong in America, some strange mold, fungus is spreading everywhere, and all medical , health Dept. calling the victims delusional when coming forward without proper diagonosis or any proof of person being delusional, if this many people comming forward, and infected, they need to investigate deeper into patient’s enviroment and work place, in my case, all they need to do is analyzing my clothing or bedding material, what i am infected with is all around me, especially on my clothing, this stub is not embedded in textile, and we can’t get rid of it completely, my symptom started in 2006, after my dog started strange skin issue, even my dog’s vet called me delusional, after i spent thousands of dollars in his office trying to find out what he is infected with, i think i need go to another country to find out what we are infected with, this slimy stub is able to come out of my body and infect in & out of my surrounding area,

  12. mr. common sense, this M seems to bring heart condition. i read several people commenting on site their dog died of heart condition while having M. my dog has bad heart murmur and serious cough, i told the vet he has systemetic mold or fungus infection and coughfing, and vet said he is cougfing due to heart condition, he been coughfing for 2 years now, and it is getting worse daily, i am expcting to have heart condition too, even though i did not get diagonosed, everytime i go to docs, they are telling me to go see psychitrist, and i wasted my precious money on those stupid ass, my dog is totally suffuring and i don’t know what to do, i ve been to dozen vets, spent thousands of dollars, they call me, the owner delusional, even after they saw specs, bold spots on his skin, slime samples, they are telling me it is normal, about the cough, they said it is heart condition and want to put him on heavy dose heart med, I know the M slime is what cause the heart condition,

  13. Pattie Faulkenberry said:

    What a joke, albeit not a funny one! Looks like no matter how much scientific proof comes out to the contrary – ‘the powers that be’ are hell-bent on continuing to make us look like we’re crazy. I am shocked that they’ve stooped to this level, tho nothing should really surprise us at this point, huh?

  14. Dear Mr C, I am so glad that you are the kind of person who so unselfishly gives your time to open this web site. I began with this illness in I believe it was 2009. But it has effected my memory so bad that I really can’t remember. I have been through this with doctors , and like you said I just don’t see a reason to go anymore even though I’m very sick. I too have heart problems, and the symptoms of thyroid or adrenal gland problems. But it doesn’t show in bloodwork? I can not believe that they have developed this so called ” new syndrome or mental disorder”. I believe this is totally directed to us. People who have this illness and know we are physically ill. And this is their answer , so they can legally not treat us with the dignity everyone deserves. We are already labeled now they are just covering their butts from being held responsible because I think just maybe they know that research is getting close to proving we have been sick. Just maybe, they are a little scared of the truth smacking them in the face. But I do thank you because when a doctor told me to look up morgellons on the Internet . If I had not found your site and a few others I think I would either be in a mental hospital from some doctor committing me odor I might be dead. I have been fighting and I pray every day for the strength to keep on. But I will not give up! Thank you, sheila

  15. I heard about this. It is very disturbing. Many people will rather suffer than be labelled now. However, I hope that the common sense will prevail.

    I understand that you are going to test your thyroid gland.
    I know that you are very keen on reading and getting wide knowledge.
    There is a very good book from Elaine Hollingsworth (I have it at home).
    You can access online and read about thyroids (chapter 1- 2).
    Her is the website:

    All the best.

  16. I left a whole long informative post on the thyroid as well as links. Dr Wilsons temperature.
    Take your temperature throughout the day, if it is below normal, you have a thyroid problem.
    Halogens cause reactions when taking iodine. Common halogens are fluoride and bromide. Both used in more things than we know. I will attempt to leave the links one more time.
    Also B6 and zinc are often indicated in hair/heart problems as well as weight gain per Dr Klinghardt and others.

  17. Mr, C

    Thank you so much for posting this. This is all so scary to me. Good luck with your thyroid.

  18. My thyroid and entire endocrine system was completely out of whack when I returned from Africa two years ago. It is so difficult to think properly when your body temp. drops beyond what it ever should. Mark Hyman MD and his functional medicine approach helped the most in my recovery. I do believe those with Celtic ancestry, such as myself, have a special need for iodine rich foods (likely because sea vegetables, fish, etc. in diet). I get dried seaweed to snack on.

    When we finally sit down and look at all of the health issues we are suffering from today, I believe we will fall into two categories: bodies which function properly or bodies which are not functioning due to toxins and/or lack of proper nutrients.

    As for the psycho-diagnosis…WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP!! If there is one thing I’ve gotten from the Morgellons symptoms, it is- when people are vulnerable, the vultures will come!

  19. Have I been banned? Neither of my posts have appeared. With only good intentions and sound advice by docs who specialize in hypothyroidism.

    • dividing cricker said:

      Sharon I don’t think so. may be a virus in your computer ? Clean Defrag and check your systems

  20. Here is an article by one of the iodine/holistic doctors i follow (even the fish are on anti depressants these days)

  21. dividing cricker said:

    Sharon those fisherman better WATCHOUT the fish might come up Shootin. See I told You ! DC

  22. see daily mail/health/ 4 2012_i_am-not_mad comprehensive uk/us deja vue vs psychiatrist/leppings…upgraded dx: mass populace rush to self diagnose cyber chondria/internet morgellons contagion. adamant psych Rx cures most cases u/me hyperhyroidism +morgellons = all symptoms.

  23. Julie Hepburn said:

    Hi  So grateful to have found you. Have been praying for help and it has not  been forthcoming from family and doctors (actually exact opposite). However I think tides are starting to change. I started suffering from collembola/morgellons 8 years ago. Have been sectioned and drugged up for years and have had several suicide attempts. However for the last two years I have had a phychiatrist with a bit of backbone and does not suffer the god delusion. I am now drug free and have more strength than I have ever had. I have “broken down to break through” – a quote from Seth Farber whom may also be of interest to you (on a spiritual and emotional fight against the degrading acts of some psychiatry guidelines).  Thanks for your link to Charles Holman my husband is starting to side with me rather than the medics. A suggestion that you try shikakai powder (a herbal hair cleanser) for your skin as this has been very beneficial to me. Look forward to reading your posts. Welldone and please keep carrying on the fight.

    Sent from Samsung Mobile

  24. Apparently, MD’s are getting dangerously lazy. If a medical condition persists and no one will learn about it thru research, let alone address the patients symptoms, then toss the patient into the 16th Century caldron where the boiled or fried people with undiagnosed illnesses. It’s a matter of lazy and psychiatry would rather prescribe a false diagnosis and a pill (to shut us up) than help us. It takes to much effort to actually help us. This is what your $600/mo health insurance buys you.

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