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Excoriation (skin-picking) disorder : a systematic review of treatment options

Lochner, Christine ; Roos, Annerine ; Stein, Dan J. (2017)

CITATION: Lochner, C., Roos, A. & Stein, D. J. 2017. Excoriation (skin-picking) disorder : a systematic review of treatment options. Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, 13: 1867-1872, doi:10.2147/NDT.S121138.

The original publication is available at https://www.dovepress.com

Article

Although pathological skin-picking has been documented in the medical literature since the 19th century, it has only recently been included as a distinct entity in psychiatric classification systems. In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition and the proposed International Classification of Diseases, Eleventh Revision, excoriation (skin-picking) disorder (ED), also known as neurotic excoriation, psychogenic excoriation, or dermatillomania), is described as recurrent picking of skin, leading to skin lesions and significant distress or functional impairment. ED is listed as one of the obsessive–compulsive and related disorders, given its overlap with conditions such as trichotillomania (hair-pulling disorder). Arguably, its inclusion and delineation in the diagnostic nomenclature will lead to increased awareness of the condition, more research, and ultimately in treatment advances. This systematic review aims to provide readers with an up-to-date view of current treatment options for ED. A MEDLINE search of the ED treatment literature was conducted to collate relevant articles published between 1996 and 2017. The findings indicate that a number of randomized controlled trails on ED have now been published, and that current management options include behavioral therapy (habit reversal or acceptance-enhanced behavior therapy), and medication (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or N-acetyl cysteine).

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