Iatrogenic Disorder

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Iatrogenic Disorder


a mental disorder caused by the traumatic influence of the words and (or) actions of medical personnel. Iatrogenic disorders are classified as psychogenic disorders. The traumas that give rise to iatrogenic disorders are usually caused by violations of the rules of medical deontology (ethics). Iatrogenic disorders generally take the form of neurotic disorders, accompanied by new sensations of pain.

A heightened level of suggestibility on the part of the patient is a decisive factor in the origin of iatrogenic disorders. Various personal characteristics may also be responsible for the onset of such disorders. For example, anxiety and nervousness may give rise to an obsession with incurable disease. The development of a iatrogenic disorder can also be fostered by a mistrust of the capabilities of medicine, various prejudices and biases concerning health, and, sometimes, by the fear experienced before a medical examination.


Kassirskii, I. A. O vrachevanii: Problemy i razdum’ia. Moscow, 1970.
Lakosina, N. D. and G. K. Ushakov. Uchebnoe posobie po meditsinskoi psikhologii. Moscow, 1976.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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