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(p. 223) Dhat Syndrome 

(p. 223) Dhat Syndrome
(p. 223) Dhat Syndrome

Rocío Martín-Santos

, Ricard Navinés

, and Manuel Valdés

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date: 16 May 2021

Dhat syndrome has been thought to occur primarily upon the Indian subcontinent, where cultural and religious beliefs view semen as one of the body’s most precious fluids. The syndrome consists of patient complaints of semen loss (in any context) accompanied by vague symptoms and/or discomfort. This mostly occurs in young men, although a variant of the condition unique to women as been reported. Dhat syndrome seems to be associated with sexual dysfunctions as well as with inadequate sex education. Due to processes of globalization and population migration, dhat syndrome now can be detected, diagnosed, and treated worldwide. In fact, some authors argue that examples of similar forms of semen-loss anxiety could be found in Western countries in the 19th century, but disappeared almost entirely in response to social, economic, and cultural changes. It is argued that clinical psychology and psychiatry must take account of culture, and any comprehensive medical and psychological approach for these patients must acknowledge the cultural background of the syndrome.

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