Article Text

Rare disease
Koro-like symptoms in two Greek men


Koro syndrome is a psychiatric disorder characterised, in its typical form, by acute and intense anxiety, with complaints in men of a shrinking penis or fear of its retraction into the abdomen and resultant death. Initially, this syndrome was described as a culture specific disorder. Sporadic cases referred to as the koro-like syndrome have been observed in western countries recently. They are more likely to appear in the context of a psychiatric or neurological disorder. The clinical course of culture bound koro syndrome is usually self limited, but in some cases it can be transient or take on a chronic or recurrent form, lasting from days to weeks, months or even years. We present two cases, one of a middle aged man whose koro-like symptoms have persisted for over 18 years in a relapse mode that is rarely observed, and one of a young schizophrenic, who also exhibits koro-like symptoms.

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