Psychosomatic distress disorders cause much suffering to millions of people all over the world. These disorders are variously referred to as somatoform, functional, pain, or somatic symptom disorders, medically unexplained symptoms or somatization. Patients with psychosomatic distress often dwell at the interface between psychiatry and medicine, and can’t find needed help. A paucity of specialized treatments for these conditions in the U.S. creates a challenge for both patients and clinicians.

Recent advances in translational research, including developmental and cognitive-affective neuroscience, shed light onto etiologic mechanisms and possibilities for treatment of these conditions. This symposium will bridge the gap between the new neurobiological insights and recent clinical research on the psychotherapeutic treatment of patients suffering from psychosomatic distress by bringing together an international group of clinicians (psychiatrists, neurologists, primary care physicians, psychologists, and art psychotherapists) as well as developmental and cognitive-affective neuroscientists.  Presentations will focus on the crucial role of early development and emotion regulation in health and disease, treatment implications of the latest research findings, state-of-the-art psychosomatic treatment programs in Europe, and illustration of the best treatment practices with clinical material.

We welcome a multidisciplinary community of psychiatrists, psychologists, neurologists, primary care, internal medicine, and family physicians, social workers, art and body psychotherapists, as well as clinical and basic researchers to take part in learning about advances in psychosomatic treatment and research and to engage in a discussion with our panel of speakers.

Conference Director: Alla Landa, PhD
Conference Organizing Committee: Alla Landa, PhD, Harald Guendel, MD, Brian A. Fallon, MD and Philip R. Muskin, MD