How is excoriation (skin-picking) disorder characterized?

Updated: Jul 10, 2018
  • Author: Roxanne Graham, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Answer

Excoriation (skin-picking) disorder, also known as psychogenic excoriation, dermatillomania or neurotic excoriation, is characterized by the conscious repetitive picking of skin that leads to skin lesions and significant distress or functional impairment.  [1]  Neurotic excoriations can be initiated by some minor skin pathology (eg, insect bite, eczema, folliculitis, or acne), but it can also be independent of any pathology. See the image below.

A picker's nodules with no crust and a scarred app A picker's nodules with no crust and a scarred appearance.

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