A disorder that involves recurrent, irresistible urges to pull out body hair.
The urges involve pulling out hair from the scalp, eyebrows, or other areas of the body.
Symptoms include compulsive hair pulling and hair loss, such as bald patches on the scalp. Social and work functioning may be affected.
Treatment options include counseling and medications, such as antidepressants.


Cluster Number:
Wiki Number: PW220
Diagnosis: Trichotillomania
US Patients: 0.6% to 4%
World Patients:
Sex Ratio: B;G10; M;F3
Age Onset: childhood or 9-13 and then continues into adulthood if there are underlying psychiatric causes
Brain Area: basal ganglia develop a habit and the frontal lobes don’t stop them; extra gray matter (interpretation)
Symptoms: Compulsive hair-pulling from scalp, eyebrows, eyelashes, face, arms and legs – and rarely, elsewhere,may also eat the hair
Progression: Can result in low self-esteem and fear of socializing
Causes: hereditary, pulls triggered by anxiety, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder
Medications: clomipramine may help; naltrexone and fluoxetine, also ; some medications increase hair-pulling
Therapies: CBT- habit-reversal training, biofeedback, hypnosis; electronic hand-tracking equipment may help, support groups


The world-wide medical research
reports chosen for each diagnosis 

Clicking each title opens the
PubMed article’s summary-abstract.

  • Allotrichophagia: A Unique Case of Parental Adjustment to Filial Pediatric Malignancy
    by Damir Huremovińá on June 27, 2022

    A 36-year-old Hispanic female patient with gastrointestinal symptoms and weight loss was found to have a trichobezoar in her stomach requiring a surgical removal. Psychiatry team was consulted due to concerns for depression and trichotillomania. The psychiatric evaluation revealed that the patient was not ingesting her own hair - the most common instance in cases of trichotillomania and trichophagia, but her daughter's hair. The patient was doing this as an unconscious, spontaneous response to...

  • Trichotillomania and Skin-Picking Disorder: An Update
    by Jon E Grant on June 24, 2022

    Trichotillomania (hair pulling disorder) and skin-picking (excoriation) disorder are common neuropsychiatric disorders (each with a point prevalence of around 2%) but are underrecognized by professionals. Affected individuals repeatedly pull out their own hair or pick at their skin, and these symptoms not only have a negative impact on these individuals because of the time they occupy but can also lead to considerable physical disfigurement, with concomitant loss of self-esteem and avoidance of...

  • What Have We Learned About the Genetics of Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders in Recent Years?
    by Manuel Mattheisen on June 24, 2022

    Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a complex, multifactorial disorder with onset in either childhood or early adulthood. Lifetime prevalence has been estimated to be around 2%-3%. DSM-5 groups OCD together with closely related disorders-body dysmorphic disorder, trichotillomania (hair-pulling disorder), hoarding disorder, and excoriation disorder (skin-picking disorder)-as obsessive-compulsive and related disorders (OCRDs). In addition, DSM-5 includes a "tic-related" specifier, recognizing...

  • Obsessive-compulsive and related disorders according to ICD-11 and DSM-5 : With brief consideration of the new obsessive-compulsive disorders olfactory reference disorder and hypochondriasis
    by M Zaudig on June 20, 2022

    This article summarizes the current state of research with respect to the new obsessive-compulsive and related disorders (OCRD) grouping according to the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD-11) and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). The ICD-11 grouping of OCRD is based on common clinical features, such as repetitive undesired thoughts and repetitive behavior and is supported by the literature and empirical data...