A hypochondriac is a person with hypochondriasis. The modern definition of hypochondriasis is severe anxiety concerning health or fear that death is imminent. Hypochondriasis was a diagnosis at one time, but it is no longer listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, or DSM. The official diagnosis is either somatic symptom disorder or health anxiety disorder.
An estimated one out of twenty Americans who seek regular medical care may be hypochondriacs. The numbers are hard to determine accurately. Hypochondria usually starts in young adulthood and affects both men and women. A person may be a hypochondriac without ever realizing it, while some people with physical health problems believe they are hypochondriacs.
This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other health-care professional.