This text presents a resume of the author's thoughts about the effects of functional illness upon the patient and his gastrointestinal tract, ie, hollow viscera. He emphasizes repeatedly that many symptoms of organic disease result from associated functional disturbances; therefore, the effect upon the patient— pain or discomfort—may be identical whatever the type of illness. The author encourages physicians to undertake a more profound search for the many situations that can produce painful gut reactions rather than succumb to the easy alternative of overwhelming the somatic manifestations of functional illness with drug therapy. The gist of Palmer's message is to study and understand the whole patient and then direct therapy at the cause rather than to the somatic manifestation of the illness.
The first five chapters orient the reader to the comprehensive evaluation and treatment of the patient. These presentations will be valuable for any student or clinician to assist