Somatoform disorders, somatization and abnormal illness behaviour

S. K. Chaturvedi, Geetha Desai, Deepika Shaligram

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Somatization and abnormal illness behaviour (AIB) often co-exist, and their inter-relationship appears to be complex. Patients with somatization are often observed to demonstrate abnormal illness behaviour. On the other hand, somatization has been explained in terms of abnormal illness behaviour. The exact cause-effect or any other relationship is not fully understood. This review examines the available evidence to understand these two clinically important, common and interrelated phenomena, their measurements and management. Many studies have confirmed that occurrence of multiple somatic symptoms as the chief or presenting complaints are highly suggestive of abnormal illness behaviour. Recognition of AIB in somatoform disorders is important in order to avoid unnecessary tests, inappropriate treatment, and to prevent encouragement and reinforcement of abnormal behaviours.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-80
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Review of Psychiatry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 01-02-2006
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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