ObjectivesZZKleptomania is a disabling disorder, which results in intense personal shame, as well as familial, social, and legal problems. Despite its serious results, kleptomania remains poorly understood by the general public, clinicians, and the patients themselves. This study aimed to review the clinical characteristics, comorbidity, neurobiology, and treatment options of patients with kleptomania. MethodsZZDomestic and international databases were searched using the keywords of “kleptomania” and “shoplifting”. The search included articles published until May, 2010. ResultsZZThe searches identified 252 articles. After excluding those which were overlapping in content or outside the scope of this study, a total of 65 articles remained for inclusion in this review. In general, the onset of kleptomania occurs in late adolescence or early adulthood, and the disorder is more common among women. Lifetime psychiatric comorbidity is frequent. Patients with kleptomania experience a significant decline in social and occupational functioning. Evidence suggests that kleptomania responds well to both pharmacological and psychosocial interventions. ConclusionZZThere is a need for mental health professionals to recognize and treat patients with kleptomania. More research into the etiology and treatment of this disorder, including studies involving double-blind, placebo-controlled trials, is required.
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