Conversion disorder
Conversion Disorder

Conversion Disorder: Definition, 3 Causes, Symptoms, and Diagnosis

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Have you heard of conversion disorder? Conversion disorder is a disease that affects the functioning of the nervous system, but are not associated with neurological diseases or other diseases. Symptoms can appear in some episodes that are temporary or can also last a long time.

Initially, experts believed that nerve problems in conversion disorders occur due to stress and traumatic events that befall a person. That is, it used to be believed that the psychological problems experienced by the patient were “converted” or turned into physical symptoms. The patient experiences a traumatic or stressful event, then the body responds to a disturbance involving the senses and motor control.

Today, however, conversion disorders are considered a stand-alone disorder. Psychological problems, such as trauma and stress, are often seen in someone suffering from conversion disorders, but not always experienced in all patients.

Because conversion disorders involve neurological disorders and psychological disorders, the treatment of patients suffering from conversion disorders often overlaps in the areas of psychiatry and neurology. However, it is important to note that the symptoms experienced by the patient are real and not artificial.

Check out the following reviews to find out conversion disorders.

Conversion Disorder Definition

Conversion disorder is a psychiatric condition in which a person feels physical symptoms such as loss of control of nervous system function and those symptoms are not associated with other diseases. This condition is also called functional neurological disorder, which refers to abnormal functioning of the central nervous system. This disorder is more common in women than in men.

Conversion Disorder Causes

The cause of the disease is not known for certain. However, researchers believe that the condition appears as a physical response to mental, physical, or psychological trauma. Triggers for the appearance of symptoms include:

  • The existence of stressful events
  • Experiencing emotional trauma, stress, or physical trauma
  • Changes in brain function, be it in structures, cells, or chemical reactions in the body.

Conversion Disorder Symptoms

Here are the symptoms of conversion disorders that affect the movement and function of the body, such as:

  • Limp
  • Temporary paralysis of the hands and feet
  • Loss of balance
  • Seizures
  • Difficulty swallowing, like something stuck in the throat
  • Difficulty walking
  • Uncontrolled movement of body parts or tremors
  • Fainting (non-epileptic seizures).

Some of the symptoms that affect the senses include:

  • Loss of feel (numbness)
  • Visual impairments, including double vision or blindness
  • Communication interruptions, including sound loss or articulation changes
  • Hearing loss, including difficulty hearing or not being able to hear at all.

Each patient experiences symptoms that vary in nature can be mild or severe. The occurrence can be temporary, it can also be in a long time. As a result, the body’s ability to function normally will be impaired. The severity or disability caused by conversion disorders can be similar to those experienced by people with other similar medical diseases.

If you experience any of the symptoms mentioned, go to the doctor immediately to find out the cause of the symptoms and get the right treatment.

Conversion Disorder Diagnosis

Symptoms of conversion disorders can be similar to a number of other medical conditions. Therefore, it is important to rule out other possible causes before diagnosing conversion disorders.

There are no specific tests to diagnose this condition. However, some tests are still needed to rule out any medical conditions that may be the cause of the symptoms shown. These types of tests include:

  • CT scans
  • Electroencephalography (EEG)
  • Routine tests such as blood pressure and body reflexes.

Meanwhile, the diagnosis of conversion disorder is determined if it meets the criteria of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition (DSM-5), namely:

  • Loss of control over sensory movements or symptoms;
  • Symptoms occur after a traumatic or stressful event;
  • The symptoms that do not appear to have an underlying medical or physical cause;
  • Symptoms interfere with daily activities.

Last Updated on March 31, 2021 Reviewed by Market Health Beauty Team

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