In epidemiological surveys about neurotic and psychosomatic disturbances there is the question of how relevant the reported syndromes are. An important criterion to evaluate the relevance of a syndrome is its individual and social consequences. In a general population sample of 600 young adults in the Canton of Zurich (Switzerland), subjects answered a structured interview (SPIKE) about 25 different neurotic and psychosomatic syndromes and their consequences: personal suffering, imparied role performance, tendency to become chronic, and medical treatment. A number of neurotic syndromes (especially depression, anxiety, and exhaustion) ranked highest with regard to individual suffering and impaired role performance, but they rarely led to medical treatment. Psychosomatic syndromes, on the other hand, while treated more often, only caused minor personal suffering and did not impair role performance very much.