Child Psychiatry & Human Development

, Volume 41, Issue 4, pp 448–463 | Cite as

A Preliminary Analysis of the Phenomenology of Skin-picking in Prader-Willi Syndrome

  • Jessica R. Morgan
  • Eric A. Storch
  • Douglas W. Woods
  • Danielle Bodzin
  • Adam B. Lewin
  • Tanya K. Murphy
Original Article


To examine the nature and psychosocial correlates of skin-picking behavior in youth with Prader-Willi Syndrome (PWS). Parents of 67 youth (aged 5–19 years) with PWS were recruited to complete an internet-based survey that included measures of: skin-picking behaviors, the automatic and/or focused nature of skin-picking, severity of skin-picking symptoms, anxiety symptoms, developmental functioning, symptoms of inattention, impulsivity, and oppositionality, and quality of life. Results indicated that skin-picking was endorsed in 95.5% of youth. Direct associations of moderate strength were found between skin-picking severity and symptoms of anxiety, inattention, oppositionality, developmental functioning, and quality of life. Other descriptive data, such as areas picked, cutaneous factors, antecedents, and consequences related to skin-picking are reported. The prevalence and consequences associated with skin-picking in PWS indicate a greater need for clinician awareness of the behavior and interventions tailored to meet the needs of this population.


Prader-Willi syndrome Skin-picking Youth Phenomenology 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jessica R. Morgan
    • 1
  • Eric A. Storch
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Douglas W. Woods
    • 4
  • Danielle Bodzin
    • 1
  • Adam B. Lewin
    • 1
  • Tanya K. Murphy
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PediatricsUniversity of South FloridaSt. PetersburgUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of South FloridaTampaUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyUniversity of South FloridaTampaUSA
  4. 4.Department of PsychologyUniversity of Wisconsin-MilwaukeeMilwaukeeUSA

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