A provocative rant for comment
Hypochondriasis and health anxiety is of course the same thing, but no one writes on here to say they are an hypochondriac. Health anxiety only became a term in common use in recent years and as a health professional I believe its use has coincided with a large increase in "sufferers". There seem more people than ever worrying about their health and yet never have we been healthier (apart from the overweight, over indulged and unfit ones) and lived longer. Perhaps because that word hypochondriac has a negative stigma attached to it we used to get over it more easily, whereas now we can consume numerous tests, frequent hospital and doctor visits and truly indulge ourselves as sufferers.
I realise it is very real and causes considerable grief, but doesn't writing and frequently complaining about it reinforce the suffering??
All of those with chest pains, dizziness or headaches, but numerous normal tests, odd feelings that are difficult to describe allow us to indulge our senses, rather than live our lives.
Most symptoms people write about on this forum don't have a physical cause, but the distress they cause is perhaps magnified by the attention they receive.
In the words of a book title " you need to get out of your head and into your life"
I'll watch out for the responses - I'll be ducking behind the parapet