Imagine the following. There is a sudden change in your body temperature. Your heart starts to beat more quickly. You begin to sweat. You have read about the symptoms of a heart attack. You beging to think that you are having a heart attack. Your anxiety rises. The combination of fear, fantasy and a catalogue of symptoms that you have heard about through our culture pushes you closer and closer to a panic attack.
Hypochondria is rarely a personal or private expression of symptoms and behviour. It is a private pain that has its roots inside image-worlds that are packed with information. In this case, information about symptoms may produce them.