Hong Kong J Psychiatry 2007;17:37

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Mark of Trichotillomania
HK Cheung

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A 59-year-old man was found incidentally to have a vertical red line across the nail-bed of his right thumb, which he admitted to be self-inflicted. Interrogation revealed that over the past 40 years, he had also had a compulsion to pinch his hairs and pull them out using his dominant hand.

A line of stress on the nail of the thumb of the dominant hand can be a mark of trichotillomania.

Dr HK Cheung, FHKCPsych
Department of Psychiatry
Castle Peak Hospital
Tsing Chung Koon Road
Tuen Mun, New Territories
Hong Kong, China

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