Clinical Characteristics and Comorbidity of Pediatric Trichotillomania: the Study of 38 Cases in Croatia.
Psychiatr Danub. 2018 Mar;30(1):79-84
Authors: Klobučar A, Folnegović-Šmalc V, Kocijan-Hercigonja D, Sović S, Gulić L
BACKGROUND: The main goal of this study was to analyse and show clinical characteristics and psychiatric comorbidity in 38 participants aged between 10 and 17 with DSM-IV diagnoses of Trichotillomania (TTM) that we were treating at Children’s Hospital Zagreb from 2008 to 2017.
SUBJECTS AND METHODS: We analyzed the data obtained from semi-structured interviews by the criteria of DSM-IV, Youth Self Report (YSR) (Achenbach & Rescorla 2001) and survey that we created.
RESULTS: From 38 participants 21 were girls. The activities during which the participants state that they mostly pull hairs are as follows: doing homework and learning, working on PC, in the toilet, watching TV etc. The most common sites on the body from which participants pulled hair were scalp and among nonscalp sites eyebrows and eyelashes. We found nail biting in more than a half of participants. In 22 participants one or more comorbid disorder has been found, of which ADHD (n=6) and tics (n=5) are most co-occurring disorders. The internalized and externalized problems were nearly evenly represented. Trichophagia was reported by two participants. The results indicate that more than two thirds of participants isolate themselves during hair pulling and half of them try to hide consequences. Median time from the first occurrence of the symptoms to the first visit to a child psychiatrist caused by TTM problem was 9 months (min 5; max 24) what we consider a very long period of time that increased the probability of complications.
CONCLUSIONS: Knowledge about this disorder and cooperation among pediatric experts is extremely important for recognizing it at an early stage and starting the treatment especially considering habit-forming mechanism, the burden of an emotional distress and frequent comorbidity. Further research is needed.
PMID: 29546862 [PubMed – in process]