Original Research

Sniffing out olfactory reference syndrome

Eileen Thomas, Juanè Voges, Bonginkosi Chiliza, Dan J. Stein, Christine Lochner
South African Journal of Psychiatry | Vol 23 | a1016 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajpsychiatry.v23i0.1016 | © 2017 Eileen Thomas, Juanè Voges, Bonginkosi Chiliza, Dan J. Stein, Christine Lochner | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 06 June 2016 | Published: 31 January 2017

About the author(s)

Eileen Thomas, Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University, South Africa
Juanè Voges, Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University, South Africa
Bonginkosi Chiliza, Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University, South Africa
Dan J. Stein, US/UCT MRC Unit on Anxiety and Stress Disorders, Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health, University of Cape Town, South Africa and US/UCT MRC Unit on Anxiety and Stress Disorders, Department of Psychiatry, Stellenbosch University, South Africa
Christine Lochner, US/UCT MRC Unit on Anxiety and Stress Disorders, Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health, University of Cape Town, South Africa and US/UCT MRC Unit on Anxiety and Stress Disorders, Department of Psychiatry, Stellenbosch University, South Africa


Share this article

Bookmark and Share

Abstract

Olfactory reference syndrome is characterised by the erroneous belief that one emits an unpleasant body odour. This results in significant distress and is often accompanied by repetitive behaviour such as frequent showering in an attempt to camouflage the perceived odour. The body odour concerns may have a delusional quality and do not respond to simple reassurance or counterexample. Herein, we report the case of an olfactory reference disorder (ORD) patient who had received multiple medical interventions and undergone polysurgery prior to an accurate diagnosis being established. ORD may lead to significant disability, yet often goes unrecognised for many years. For many patients, poor insight will contribute to their reluctance to consider psychiatric treatment. This case demonstrated that a multimodal treatment approach comprising judicious medication use, combined with cognitive behavioural therapy, in the context of a therapeutic alliance yielded therapeutic success.

Keywords

No related keywords in the metadata.

Metrics

Total abstract views: 685
Total article views: 690


Crossref Citations

No related citations found.