Monday, March 22, 2010

Behavioural Medicine

Behavioral medicine can be defined as the application of knowledge provided by the behavioral sciences to the understanding and treatment of medical problems. In this sense, it differs fundamentally from psychosomatic medicine which focuses on hypothetical conflicts intrapsychic explanation for somatic disorders. Behavioral medicine is an empirical discipline whose objectives are to highlight and change the relationship between observable behavior, the coping strategies of the individual, cognitive and emotional variables, the physiological functioning and disease itself . The work on operant conditioning of autonomic nervous system and on the psycho-biological stress response have provided the main theoretical foundations of behavioral medicine. Behavioral medicine has enabled the development of new techniques and strategies, where the principles of behavioral change and cognitive changes are applied to the treatment, prevention and rehabilitation of many physical illnesses ranging from chronic pain to cardiovascular disease .
Behavioral medicine is now well established and its development in the years ahead will depend as much further research as the making available to clinicians for therapeutic strategies to effectively checked.

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