In psychoanalysis, an immediate benefit, such as relief from anxiety, resulting from a neurosis or a defence mechanism. Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) drew the distinction between primary gain and secondary gain in 1916–17 in his book Introductory Lectures on Psycho-Analysis (Standard Edition, XV-XVI, at pp. 381–5). Also called paranosic gain. See also flight into illness. Compare secondary gain.