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Revista Española de Salud Pública

Print version ISSN 1135-5727

Abstract

VELASCO, Sara; RUIZ, Mª Teresa  and  ALVAREZ-DARDET, Carlos. Attention models to somatic symptoms without organic cause: from phisiopathologic disorders to malaise of women. Rev. Esp. Salud Publica [online]. 2006, vol.80, n.4, pp. 317-333. ISSN 1135-5727.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1135-57272006000400003.

Somatic symptoms of no identifiable organic cause remain medically unexplained and have been delved into to only a limited degree from a biologicist conception of health. Different critical theories study contextual, gender-related and subjective factors for Somatic Symptoms of No Identifiable Organic Cause and their care models. This study has been aimed at reviewing published Spanish studies (1995-2002) exploring explanatory SSNIOC's by relating them to the underlying health theories. A search was run in Medline, Sociologycal Abstracts, Psycinfo, Doyma, Google and Scirus, using the key words: Gender and health, Primary care, Somatic complaints and women or gender, Fibromialgy, Chronic fatigue, Functional syndromes, Feminist studies and primary care, malaise women, a total of 31 articles having been selected and classified by health theories: biomedical, psychosocial, socialist, biopsychosocial, ecosocial, psychoanalytical and feminist.. Explanatory/care models were then identified by theory-related blocks, according to: terms use for SNIOC's; related/causal factors, care models, physician-patient relationship factors. Within the biomedical framework, physicpathological, directive care explanations were found focusing on the medical viewpoint, tending toward adapting the patient to his/her degree of chronicity with symptomatic and antidepressant treatments. In critical theory models: symptoms are related to the social context, subjective gender experiences, focusing on the patient viewpoint; avoiding medicalization, aimed at constructing the subjective significance of the symptoms, on empowering the woman and on her taking responsibility for herself. It is advisable to recognize the existence of theories alternative to biomedical theory which broaden the comprehension of SSNIOC's, by including contextual, gender-related subjective factors related to the wellness-illness process which give rise to care models of greater integral care potential.

Keywords : Gender; Women's health; Feminism; Psychoanalysis; Affective symptoms; Models, Theoretical; Biomedical Research; Models, Biological.

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