psychopathology

psychopathology

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DSM-5 Psychology manual

Susto Susto (“fright”) is a cultural explanation for distress and misfortune prevalent among some Latinos in the United States and among people in Mexico, Central
America, and South America. It is not recognized as an illness category among Latinos from the Caribbean. Susto is an illness attributed to a frightening event that
causes the soul to leave the body and results in unhappiness and sickness, as well as difficulties functioning in key social roles. Symptoms may appear any time from
days to years after the fright is experienced. In extreme cases, susto may result in death. There are no specific defining symptoms for susto; however, symptoms that
are often reported by people with susto include appetite disturbances, inadequate or excessive sleep, troubled sleep or dreams, feelings of sadness, low self-worth or
dirtiness, interpersonal sensitivity, and lack of motivation to do anything. Somatic symptoms accompanying susto may include muscle aches and pains, cold in the
extremities, pallor, headache, stomachache, and diarrhea. Precipitating events are diverse, and include natural phenomena, animals, interpersonal situations, and
supernatural agents, among others. Three syndromic types of susto (referred to as cibih in the local Zapotec language) have been identified, each having different
relationships with psychiatric diagnoses. An interpersonal susto characterized by feelings of loss, abandonment, and not being loved by family, with accompanying
symptoms of sadness, poor self-image, and suicidal ideation, seemed to be closely related to major depressive disorder. When susto resulted from a traumatic event that
played a major role in shaping symptoms and in emotional processing of the experience, the diagnosis of posttraumatic stress disorder appeared more appropriate. Susto
characterized by various recurrent somatic symptoms—for which the person sought health care from several practitioners—was thought to resemble a somatic symptom
disorder. Related conditions in other cultural contexts: Similar etiological concepts and symptom configurations are found globally. In the Andean region, susto is
referred to as espanto.
Related conditions in DSM-5: Major depressive disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, other specified or unspecified trauma and stressor-related disorder, somatic
symptom disorders.

 

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