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[Gr. symptōma, occurrence]
Any change in the body or its functions as perceived by the patient. The patient describes his or her symptoms in his or her complaint or history of the present illness. A sign, however, is an objective finding observed or discovered during the examination.
SEE: sign (2)
Analysis of symptoms include: onset: date, manner (gradual or sudden), and precipitating factors; characteristics: character, location, radiation, severity, timing, aggravating or relieving factors, and associated symptoms; course since onset: incidence, progress, and effects of therapy.