BJPsych Open 2017 May 9;3(3):154-158. Epub 2017 Jun 9.
, MD, FRCPsych, Departments of Psychiatry, Neurology, and Anaesthesiology, Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA.
Background: Delusional parasitosis is infrequently seen in hospital-based consultation-liaison psychiatry.
Aims: Although there are many publications on delusional parasitosis, this report reviews a unique case that was diagnosed during a hospital admission and treated over the next 36 months.
Method: Case report and literature review.
Results: This case report describes a 65-year-old man who was diagnosed with delusional parasitosis during a hospital admission for congestive heart failure and acute kidney injury. A longitudinal description of the patient's condition during the hospital stay and in the 36 months following discharge, during which time he was treated by a consultation psychiatrist, is provided.
Conclusions: In discussing the treatment of a challenging presentation, this case demonstrates the opportunity for consultation psychiatrists to initiate care in patients who might not otherwise seek psychiatric services. Patients with somatic delusions represent one group of patients who are unlikely to independently seek psychiatric treatment.