HARRY D. KERR, M.D.
To the editor: Schnaper and Wiernik (1) saw a defense pattern among the spouses of patients with cancer in which the spouses presented with various physical symptoms and the belief that they too had cancer. These symptoms evidently were part of their attempts to grapple with their own emotional strain.
A 55-year-old man had intense pruritus (especially nocturnal), malaise, anorexia, mild weight loss, and epigastric discomfort for several months. Results of a thorough physical examination were normal except for numerous excoriations on the arms, legs, buttocks, and upper back. Results of screening laboratory testing and radiographs were normal. Hydroxyzine gave
KERR HD. Pseudocancer Symptoms and Mourning. Ann Intern Med. ;102:720. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-102-5-720_2
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1985;102(5):720.
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