Annals of Hematology

, Volume 68, Issue 6, pp 303–306 | Cite as

Munchausen syndrome in hematology: Case reports of three variants and review of the literature

  • J. Zahner
  • W. Schneider
Case Report


We describe five patients with hematologic Munchausen syndrome who were discovered within 5 years. The patients presented for hematologic evaluation of coagulopathy, iron-deficiency anemia, or macrohematuria with severe anemia. The final diagnoses were phenprocoumon intake (2x), self-inflicted phlebotomy (2x), and urogenital manipulation (1x). All five patients were female ranging in age between 23 and 45 years; two were nurses. In four cases we were able to unmask the patient. We think that hematologic Munchausen syndrome has a rather uniform pattern and may be divided into three subtypes: (a) anticoagulation type, (b) anemia type, and (c) pretended hematologic form. Hematologic Munchausen syndrome should especially be considered if there is an unexplained coagulation disorder or therapy-resistant iron-deficiency anemia, and if the patient is a young female nurse who has had many hospitalizations.

Key words

Munchausen syndrome Factitious disorder Hematology Coagulation disorder Iron-deficiency anemia 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Zahner
    • 1
  • W. Schneider
    • 1
  1. 1.Klinik für Hämatologie, Onkologie und klinische ImmunologieHeinrich-Heine-UniversitätDüsseldorfGermany

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