Low-Dose Olanzapine for Self-Mutilation Behavior in Patients With Borderline Personality Disorder

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Letter to the Editor

Sir: Self-mutilation is a common but difficult symptom to treat. Seen in several different psychiatric disorders, it is an intermittent phenomenon of borderline personality disorder in times of stress. Cutting, burning, and inflicting pain may be self-punishment, parasuicidal behavior, or part of a psychoticlike set of symptoms. There is no specific medication that has an indication for treatment of self-mutilation. Frequently, drugs are prescribed to treat the underlying psychiatric condition. Many medications have been tried with varying degrees of success for borderline personality disorder with self-mutilation. The following 2 case reports describe patients with severe borderline personality disorder whose self-mutilation responded to low-dose olanzapine.

J Clin Psychiatry 2001;62(4):296-297 [letter]