What is a different way of saying "my client has experienced something? I am a nurse case manager who has to write functional assessments, etc. I'm tired of using the same phrase repeatedly. I'm referring to having hallucinations, experienced loss, trauma, grief etc.

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    "Experienced" sounds like a good word for the context you describe. So that the community can help you find an even better word, please edit your question to say why experienced doesn't work well in your context, and what qualities you're hoping to find in the word you're looking for.
    – Lawrence
    Mar 24, 2017 at 14:50
  • Beaten on the wire by @OmidRezaAbbasi for "suffer", consider "endured".
    – Graffito
    Mar 24, 2017 at 15:04
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    Isn’t your primary objective here to communicate succinctly and clearly. If ‘experienced’ is normally used and would be expected in this case, switching to something else (especially something that might not be as good or that might have other unintended implications) is probably not advisable just for a little variety.
    – Jim
    Mar 24, 2017 at 17:42
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    In that context "reports" or "presents with" would often be used, emphasizing the source of your information that the client had this experience.
    – ohwilleke
    Mar 24, 2017 at 18:09
  • I second Jim and Lawrence. Experienced is the natural choice, even if it seems redundant in your...experience. Mar 24, 2017 at 19:12

6 Answers 6


Try synonyms: my client has experienced loss/ my client has faced trauma/ my client has endured trauma/ my client has suffered hallucinations/ my client has sustained trauma/ my client withstood trauma.

If the issue is ongoing, you can employ more descriptive words:

my client suffers from hallucinations/ my client endures hallucinations/ my clients has continual hallucinations/ my client is/was subjected to persistent trauma.

You can also try using the nouns themselves:

my client has had traumatic encounters/ my client hallucinates/ my client has hallucinations/ my client had hallucinated/ my client was traumatized.

Maybe using a different sentence structure helps.

my clients lost a family member, and feels very depressed



Works well, (past sense undergone)


My patient has undergone hallucinations

Courtesy, online dictionary

hallucinate v.intr.

To undergo hallucination.

  • Or simply "gone through".
    – Mr Lister
    Mar 24, 2017 at 15:26
  • I disagree completely. "Undergo" places too much emphasis on the concept of going through a process. That doesn't apply well to experiencing hallucinations and, in the case of your example sentence, sounds really awkward. Mar 24, 2017 at 19:11
  • @AleksandrH pleased to hear your disagreements! Heaven forbid, we would all believe the same... there would be no point in these boards! I would just point out that the last sentence isn't mine it's an example compiled by an editor of a dictionary (albeit the 'free dictionary' by Farlax, but it has served some 9 billion visitors so far).
    – Gary
    Mar 24, 2017 at 20:57
  • The last example is actually the one I prefer. The first is the one I found a bit awkward, since "hallucinations" is more of a collective noun than a process. In contrast, I interpret the noun "hallucination" as implying the process of hallucinating, in which case "undergo" does seem appropriate. Mar 24, 2017 at 21:29

"The patient presents with..." would work for things like a rash, you can put details in between, for example; "The patient presents with a uniform circular rash on >body part<"

"The patient is suffering from..." would work with things like "A dry cough" or "pain while passing urine".

The patient shows evidence of..." works with things like jaundice, concussion ect.


Maybe suffer / suffer from is a better choice. As an example from Merriam-Webster about Trauma:

She never fully recovered from the traumas she suffered during her childhood.

Another sentence from Encyclopedia of Trauma: An Interdisciplinary Guide is as:

Females who suffer from Trauma are more likely to present with PTSD.


To avoid repetition of a particular vocabulary item, you aren't restricted to synonyms. You can also vary the sentence structure. Try to tell a story. My mother worked in a state mental hospital and I once read one of her case notes. I was surprised at how interesting they were. She told the patient's story, in a succinct way, that was easy to follow. I don't have an example of hers handy, so I will make something up, to try to give you an idea what I mean.

Mr. K was raised by his mother and maternal grandmother, alternating in his early years between the two households. He had weekly visits to his father from ages 5 to 11, at which point his mother went to court to obtain sole custody and end visitation with father. His grandmother died after a brief illness when he was 18. At 19, after a drug arrest, police brought him to the emergency room, where he reported hallucinations. He was admitted for treatment. Themes that came up in treatment included grief over the loss of his grandmother and the loss of contact with his father. He was stabilized with X meds, which were gradually reduced over a two-week period, and he transitioned to outpatient care. Three months ago, an indecent exposure arrest brought him back to our facility etc. Mr. K recently revealed in treatment that he had two epileptic seizures at age 10, and that from age 10 to 11, his father was regularly hitting him, calling him "stupid," and subjecting him to sleep deprivation. His new treatment plan includes weekly group therapy in the trauma group that is currently being formed and a neurology consult.

I apologize if the details and the style aren't very authentic. I just wanted to show that you don't have to be boxed into using the same sentence structure over and over.


Try "went through". It may not be the best replacement, especially if you are trying to emphasize a happy tone.

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    Mar 25, 2017 at 5:18

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