BMJ Case Reports 2011; doi:10.1136/bcr.04.2011.4106
  • Rare disease

Self inflicted corneal abrasions due to delusional parasitosis

  1. Barry I Liskow
  1. Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, Kansas, US
  1. Correspondence to Dr Adeel Meraj, adeel_shamse{at}


The authors report a case of self inflicted bilateral corneal abrasions and skin damage due to ophthalmic and cutaneous delusional parasitosis. A male in his 50s presented with a 10 year history of believing that parasites were colonizing his skin and biting into his skin and eyes. The patient had received extensive medical evaluations that found no evidence that symptoms were due to a medical cause. He was persistent in his belief and had induced bilateral corneal abrasions and skin damage by using heat lamps and hair dryers in an attempt to disinfect his body. The patient was treated with olanzapine along with treatment for his skin and eyes. His delusional belief system persisted but no further damage to his eyes and skin was noted on initial follow-up.


  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Not obtained.

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