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Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Colombes (CHU Colombes)

Articles by Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Colombes (CHU Colombes)

Addiction to self-strangulation: a case-report

Published on: 5th December, 2017

OCLC Number/Unique Identifier: 7317654648

Introduction: DSM-5 mentions autoerotic asphyxia in the paraphilic disorders section, as a specifier for the diagnostic of sexual masochism disorder. Strangulation activities have also been observed in the “choking game”. The term “strangulation activity” is considered as more appropriate than “choking game”. While sharing a same behavior, autoerotic asphyxia and non auto-erotic strangulation activities might represent a very distinct pattern of disorders. We describe here a case report of a 25-year old male internship student who has practiced manual self-strangulation up to 40 times a day since adolescence. In the examination of this case we identify individual clinical aspects of this case in a process-based holistic case conceptualization. Case description: The patient is a 25 years old male with a post-graduate degree who presented with a recent history of poor work performance and work-related stress during an internship. He has a concomitant history of both ketamine and cannabis use disorders, and reports urges to self-strangulate, sometimes specifically avoiding contact with friends engage in this behavior and that he has never attempted to discontinue self-strangulation. Neuropsychological assessment found a cognitive functioning below that expected given his educational level. Our intervention consists of a 3-weeks cognitive and motivational therapy program in addiction unit with associated abstinence. Conclusion: Autoerotic asphyxia is a behavior observed not only in the context of sexual masochism disorder, but also as a specific addictive behavior, in the absence of sexual arousal, possibly as a result of emotional dysregulation.
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