RESEARCH ARTICLE


Hypochondriacal Anxieties in Adolescence



Stelios Christogiorgos, Dimitris Tzikas, Marie-Ange Widdershoven-Zervaki, Panagiota Dimitropoulou, Eftychia Athanassiadou, George Giannakopoulos*
Department of Child Psychiatry, Athens University Medical School, Aghia Sofia Children’s Hospital, Thivon and Papadiamantopoulou, Athens 11527, Greece


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Creative Commons License
© 2013 Christogiorgos et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode). This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Child Psychiatry, Athens University Medical School, Aghia Sofia Children’s Hospital, Thivon & Papadiamantopoulou, Athens 11527, Greece; Tel/Fax: 00302107473811; E-mail: giannakopoulos.med@gmail.com


Abstract

Hypochondriasis is one of the most characteristic psychopathological entities related to the disturbance of the body image, which is the result of complicated identifications with damaged internal objects. Transient hypochondriacal states frequently appear during periods of huge changes, such as phases of bodily growth. They often manifest themselves in adolescence which is the most favourable period for them to appear. The bodily part or function that has changed, and which was initially experienced as threatening or foreign, needs time and experience to become integrated into the total representation of the body. A case example is presented here and implications for child psychotherapy are discussed.

Keywords: Adolescence, Anxiety, Hypochondriasis, Psychoanalysis.