Somatization symptoms in pediatric abdominal pain patients: relation to chronicity of abdominal pain and parent somatization

J Abnorm Child Psychol. 1991 Aug;19(4):379-94. doi: 10.1007/BF00919084.


Symptoms of somatization were investigated in pediatric patients with recurrent abdominal pain (RAP) and comparison groups of patients with organic etiology for abdominal pain and well patients. Somatization scores were higher in RAP patients than well patients at the clinic visit, and higher than in either well patients or organic patients at a 3-month followup. Higher somatization scores in mothers and fathers were associated with higher somatization scores in RAP patients, but not in organic or well patients. Contrary to the findings of Ernst, Routh, and Harper (1984), chronicity of abdominal pain in RAP patients was not significantly associated with their level of somatization symptoms. Psychometric information about the Children's Somatization Inventory is presented.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Pain / etiology*
  • Abdominal Pain / psychology
  • Ambulatory Care
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Chronic Disease
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Hypochondriasis / psychology
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Personality Inventory
  • Recurrence
  • Reinforcement, Psychology
  • Somatoform Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Somatoform Disorders / psychology