Munchausen Syndrome Statistics

(Also Known As: Factitious Disorder Statistics, Munchausens Statistics, Malingering Statistics, Munchausen By Proxy Statistics)

(Reviewed by: Paul Peterson, Licensed Therapist)

Statistics on Munchausen Syndrome

There is limited data regarding the incidence and prevalence of Munchausen syndrome and factitious disorders in general. This is due to the fact that patients suffering these two conditions are not open and fabricate their medical condition. Since most research concerning the general population depend on a patient’s self-report, determining the incidence and prevalence of Munchausen syndrome is quite unlikely. In fact, individuals suffering from this condition are unlikely to be invited as respondents to epidemiological studies.

According to studies of some medical patients, factitious disorders are present in 0.2-1% of hospital inpatients. While Munchausen syndrome is likely in every medical condition, its prevalence is considerably high in selected cases such as those with unexplained anemia, endocrine-related problems, non-healing wounds, neurological problems, and joint and connective-tissues symptoms.

In addition, the prevalence of Munchausen syndrome is expectedly higher among patients with unknown or intractable medical symptoms. In one study, for instance, it was found that 9.3% of individuals suffering from a fever of unknown cause were diagnosed to have fabricated fevers. In another study, 40% of diabetics tampered with their medication in order to have diagnosis for unstable diabetes.

Among the cases published in various reports, Munchausen syndrome was more prominent in males than in female patients. This is in contrast to other literature which indicates that factitious and somatoform disorders are more prominent in women than men. It was likewise revealed that Munchausen syndrome is prominent in individuals aged 30-50 years.

Could You Have Munchausen Syndrome?

Munchausen Syndrome Topics

Related Conditions

Factitious Disorder – Deliberate Feigning of Symptoms, Exaggeration of Medical Condition
Malingering – Faking of Symptoms with Obvious Incentive Benefits, Exaggeration of Medical Condition, Lying, Deception
Munchausen By Proxy - An Individual Fabricates Or Exaggerates an Illness of Another Individual, Usually a Child, In Order to Draw Attention Or Sympathy from Others