Definition of Misophonia

Misophonia: a rare disorder in which certain sounds provoke extreme reactions of dislike or hatred in the affected individual. An example of mild misophonia is an aversion to the sound of fingernails scraping a blackboard. When the condition is more severe, the offending sound can produce rage, disgust, panic, hatred, suicidal thoughts, or a desire to flee. It is more common in females than in males and usually begins around ages 9-13. The exact cause is not understood. Treatments can include psychotherapy, certain antidepressant medications, and hearing aid-like devices that create distracting sounds.

REFERENCE: Longo, D.L., et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 18th ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Professional, 2012.

Last Editorial Review: 8/28/2015

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