There's lots of publicity about the latest report allegedly a high degree of health anxiety or cyberchondria amongst people referred for outpatient appointments: dailymail.co.uk/health/arti...
If we put this in context with how long it takes to obtain a diagnosis for some chronic conditions (e.g., see recent reports about an average 9 years for endometriosis and up to 15 years for Coeliac's Disease at one point) - how many people are in the 'pre-diagnosis' stage rather than in the midst of health anxiety or cyberchondria?
How many people are being dismissed as over-anxious because they're seeking treatment for clinical findings/symptoms that would 'qualify' them for treatment in another country but not according to UK guidelines? Is this more a disagreement about the time of the 'need to treat'? E.g., TSH >3 with symptoms in some countries but up to 10 in the UK?
How many people have undiagnosed rare disorders? Allegedly 1 in 50 of us. Now, they're not always clinically significant enough to cause problems but it can take a lot of diagnosis to identify some for whom their symptoms take a while to manifest and for whom there are problems (particularly those for whom the disorder is systemic so they have unrelated symptoms that are actually part of the underlying systemic condition).
And, as for health anxiety - it's not clear how they're using this term. The people with health anxiety can often have a lot of insight into their condition as it's completely debilitating for them. It's like people equating being very tidy with those who have OCD - who genuinely can't abandon a particular ritual, no matter how damaging, because they *know* it will cause harm to their loved ones or a natural disaster.
We need a lot more nuance around delayed-diagnosis times and disagreements around guidelines if we're supposed to have sensible discussions around these topics.