Sociodemographic variables, clinical characteristics, and treatments in children with trichotillomania in terms of age and gender: a multicenter study


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Arslan S. C., Cicek A., Ucuz İ., Dogru H.

NORDIC JOURNAL OF PSYCHIATRY, vol.77, no.1, pp.36-45, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 77 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/08039488.2022.2052179
  • Journal Name: NORDIC JOURNAL OF PSYCHIATRY
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Psycinfo
  • Page Numbers: pp.36-45
  • Keywords: Child, adolescent, trichotillomania, hair pulling, comorbidity, psychopharmacotherapy, PEDIATRIC TRICHOTILLOMANIA, DESCRIPTIVE PSYCHOPATHOLOGY, FUNCTIONAL IMPAIRMENT, BEHAVIOR-THERAPY, IMPACT PROJECT, DOUBLE-BLIND, COMORBIDITY, ADOLESCENT, TRIAL
  • Sivas Cumhuriyet University Affiliated: Yes

Abstract

Objective Although trichotillomania (TTM) is a common, typically pediatric-onset disorder, data on the phenomenology of TTM in children, accompanying comorbid psychiatric disorders, and treatment options are extremely limited. In our study, it was aimed to investigate these variables and related factors in patients undergoing psychiatric evaluation and follow-up. Method The study included 79 children and adolescents between the ages of 4 and 17 who were diagnosed with TTM and followed up in four different Child and Adolescent Psychiatry outpatient clinics between 2015 and 2020. The sociodemographic characteristics of these patients, clinical features of the disease, comorbid psychiatric disorders, and treatment approaches have been studied. Results Our results showed that TTM was more common in girls, hair and eyebrow plucking was the most common, and symptoms and features accompanying TTM changed with age, but not with gender. Again, 79.7% of these children had at least one psychiatric comorbid disorder (most common being anxiety disorders and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder), comorbidity was closely related to TTM severity, 93.7% used at least one pharmacotherapeutic agent, and positive response rates to treatment were found to be low. Moreover, TTM severity was found to increase with age and disease duration. Conclusion Study findings support that clinical presentation, disease severity and comorbidity rates may change with age in children and adolescents with TTM, and early intervention is important to prevent clinical progression/worsening and mental health sequela.