Perhaps I'm misinterpreting what you are advertising here but I just googled "functional somatic syndromes" to make sure I was properly understanding what it meant and this is what I found:
"They share similar phenomenologies, high rates of co-occurrence, similar epidemiologic characteristics, and higher-than-expected prevalences of psychiatric comorbidity. Although discrete pathophysiologic causes may ultimately be found in some patients with functional somatic syndromes, the suffering of these patients is exacerbated by a self-perpetuating, self-validating cycle in which common, endemic, somatic symptoms are incorrectly attributed to serious abnormality, reinforcing the patient's belief that he or she has a serious disease. Four psychosocial factors propel this cycle of symptom amplification: the belief that one has a serious disease; the expectation that one's condition is likely to worsen; the "sick role," including the effects of litigation and compensation; and the alarming portrayal of the condition as catastrophic and disabling."
I don't want to speak for everyone on this forum but I would like to express that a lot of us are experiencing very serious and debilitating illnesses that are very real and *not* psychosomatic. I do believe psychosomatic disorders are a real thing but we far to frequently get ignored and get sicker because uninformed and sometimes willingly ignorant doctors dismiss us. When we are left to our own devices we are forced to do our own research and look for answers. I think some of us show extraordinary strength in fighting our illnesses by trying to find ways to get better. For me, all I want is to get better and by no means to perpetuate or worsen how I feel. And I will fight and research until I find out how to get better!
I'm sure your intentions are good and I apologize if I'm misinterpreting your post. I personally think that as long as we can avoid not defining ourselves by our physical problems (which could be a scenario that might lead to psychosomatic issues) that we need and deserve to be taken seriously. Just because our symptoms don't fit into a nice and neat diagnostic package does not mean that they don't stem from a real illness! I think doctors would be better suited to acknowledge that not knowing what causes something does not mean it isn't real... it just means you need to do more medical research so that *we* don't have to!
I completely understand your concerns. I was a bit hesitant to use the words "functional somatic syndrome" as it has certain implications as you described. I was recently in touch with someone with the fibromyalgia network and she pointed this out as well. I decided to use this term as it's more established and more likely to be recognized, despite it's antiquated origins. The guest I've invited uses the term central sensitization syndrome instead, rather than the former. My intension was to bring up this issue as a topic for discussion during the interview and to make it clear why we should be using CSS from this point on. Another major reason for doing this interview is to legitimize your conditions and have an open discussion about the roots of chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia.
Hope you can join us.
Steven Park, MD
Thank you for your response, and yes "central sensitization syndrome" is less insulting and more of a compromise.
Since you posted this it does lead me to a question about psychosomatic syndrome... is it possible that I can message you outside a public forum?