Delusion of sexually transmitted disease169

Hypochondriasis is, of course, rampant around the topic of sexually transmitted disease. A subgroup of delusional disorder patients develop the conviction that they have venereal disease, often when there is no evidence of risk-taking behaviour having occurred. In the past syphilis was probably the greatest fear, but nowadays it is usually AIDS. Repeated tests showing negative serology have no reassuring effect. Interestingly, a few cases of AIDS have been described in recent years in which a delusional illness with hypochondriasis has emerged, usually due to direct effects of the virus on the brain.

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