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01.12.2011 | Case report | Ausgabe 1/2011 Open Access

Journal of Medical Case Reports 1/2011

Bupropion for the treatment of fluoxetine non-responsive trichotillomania: a case report

Zeitschrift:
Journal of Medical Case Reports > Ausgabe 1/2011
Autoren:
Rajshekhar Bipeta, Srinivasa SRR Yerramilli
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1186/​1752-1947-5-557) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Authors' contributions

Both RB and SRRY made substantive intellectual contributions to this study. Both authors analyzed and interpreted the data from our patient. RB performed all the assessments, treated our patient and was a major contributor to writing the manuscript. SRRY was involved in revising the manuscript critically for important intellectual content. Both authors have read and given approval for the final version of the manuscript to be published. Both authors participated sufficiently in the work and take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content.

Abstract

Introduction

Trichotillomania, classified as an impulse control disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, is characterized by the recurrent pulling out of one's hair, resulting in noticeable hair loss. The condition has a varied etiology. Specific serotonin reuptake inhibitors are considered the treatment of choice; however some patients fail to respond to this class of drugs. A few older reports suggest possible benefit from treatment with bupropion.

Case presentation

A 23-year-old Asian woman with fluoxetine non- responsive trichotillomania was treated with sustained release bupropion (up to 450 mg/day) and cognitive behavior therapy. She demonstrated clinically significant improvement on the Clinical Global Impression - Improvement scale by week 13. The improvement persisted throughout the 12-month follow-up period.

Conclusions

The present case report may be of interest to psychiatrists and dermatologists. Apart from the serotonergic pathway, others, such as the mesolimbic pathway, also appear to be involved in the causation of trichotillomania. Bupropion may be considered as an alternative pharmacological treatment for patients who do not respond to specific serotonin reuptake inhibitors. However, this initial finding needs to be confirmed by well designed double-blind placebo controlled trials.

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