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Revolutionary New Treatment Plan Developed For Treatment Of Unexplained Symptoms

It has been reported that doctors from the Michigan State University (MSU) have developed a revolutionary new treatment plan, which allows a more effective// means of treatment by the primary care physicians for people suffering from symptoms and conditions that are medically unexplained.

Robert Smith, a physician and professor in MSU’s Department of Medicine, College of Human Medicine, explaining that the diagnosis of medically unexplained symptoms is a major setback, which affects millions of people and taxes the already over-burdened health care system, he and his colleagues have devised a treatment plan which involves the combination of behavior modification and pharmaceutical treatment, as well as an increased measure of enhanced communication between patient and doctor.

Testing this treatment with nearly 100 patients, Smith and colleagues found that nearly half of them showed marked improvement. The findings were published in the July issue of the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

“What we did was use what they’ve learned in psychiatry and the pain clinics, which is cognitive behavioral treatment and pharmacological treatment,” Smith said. “We simply adapted it for use by primary care providers. But the centerpiece of all this is the doctor-patient relationship.”

Medically unexplained symptoms can be frustrating for both patient and physician, Smith said.

“We’re in a disease-based system and because of that fact, doctors don’t particularly like patients with medically unexplained symptoms,” he said. “On the other hand, patients are unhappy because their needs aren’t being met.”

This is where the value of the doctor-patient relationship comes into play, Smith said.

“For years we’ve taught our students the value of this relationship and it really works,” he said. “It’s about communicating, how to address emotion, how to respond to it, how to be empathetic. We integrated all
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