Psychosomatic Medicine


Patient Care

We examine and treat psychosomatic diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome and headache, eating disorder, panic disorder, etc.
Many people think that psychosomatic medicine is a department which diagnoses and treats “mental” diseases. In fact, we mainly treat the patients with “psychosomatic diseases”, which means that the onset and progress of the patients’ diseases and physical conditions are closely associated with psychosocial factors such as stress.
We are a university hospital, thus one of our big advantages is to provide smoothly our patients with appropriate healthcare services with the system which allows us to diagnose and treat precisely from both physical and psychological points of view, as well as promptly refer the patients in need of special treatments for internal condition to the appropriate department.
We have a lot of patients having the problem that they are still suffering from being in bad shape even though no particular diseases were found by other hospitals or clinics. We strive to perform physical examination thoroughly and take meticulous care of psychological problems after we take enough time for medical interview to listen attentively to the patients’ concerns on their first visit.
On the first visit, we give every patient the simple screening test to find mild depression. We use our original medical questionnaires called “SRQ-DⅡ” for this screening. It is one of the important scales to assess the patients’ depression status which cannot be quantified. Currently, general internal medicine departments in many other hospitals and clinics use SRQ-DⅡ because it helps them judge if the patient is applicable to referral to psychosomatic medicine. We may give “Life chart” and “Life rhythm record chart” to some patients with depression at our outpatient clinic and request them to record their behavior every day. The purpose of “Life chart” is to enable the patients themselves to check their mood swings in a day. It is effective to figure out objectively “in what situation am I depressed?” and improve their lifestyle. The purpose of “Life rhythm record chart” is to regulate the rhythm of their everyday life. It is helpful to learn self-control in some cases, for example, which the patient is now taking a leave of absence due to depression but wants to regulate his lifestyle intended to return to his job. We ask the patients to bring these charts on the next visit. Sharing the records of life since the last visit with the doctor enables us to advise the patients appropriately based on their lifestyle.
We also dedicate ourselves to patient support and research on eating disorder as one of the nation’s top university hospitals which can provide inpatient treatments for eating disorder. We mainly treat it in our outpatient clinic but inpatient treatments over a period of two weeks or a month are also available depending on the patients’ symptoms and condition (we never force patients to be admitted to the hospital). We are one of the nation’s top university hospitals which provide inpatient treatments to the patients with eating disorder, thus many patients visit us even from outside Kanto region. Length of stay in the hospital is short, so we do not aim to cure completely, but set small goals with the patients and support them to move forward toward the goals without stress. We have already started the research using diagnostic imaging equipment, Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS), to support diagnoses of depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, etc. which have possibilities of causing eating disorder. At present, it does not provide definite diagnoses and treatments, however, we are moving forward with the research to seek more effective cures.