Genital Retraction Syndrome: Penis Panic

Posted: October 3, 2009 at 4:36 am by
Filed under Disorders Psychology
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In the case of extremely bizarre disorders, Genital Retraction Syndrome takes the cake. Often a culture-specific syndrome, it is a condition where an individual believes his or her genitals are retracting into the body, shrinking, or have been removed. This occurs in both males and females, where men often feel their penis is retracting into their body while women feel their breasts are retracting or shrinking. This disorder often occurs in Africa and Asia, and often in areas where there is little access to medical information, leading people to believe myths and superstition.

One of the striking features of this disorder is it’s ability to spread in a population. Often called a Penis Panic, groups of men will begin to believe their penis is shrinking or is completely gone, causing mass hysteria. One can assume one member of a population begins to experience the symptoms, talks with others, who in turn also believe the same event is occurring to them. Does this mean mental disorders can be contagious? It depends, as extreme anxiety among a group can at times cause mental disorders within those in the group. Luckily for this disorder, it is rare, and often only occurs in countries with little medical information. In such areas, witchcraft is common, influencing people to believe curses or black magic exists by which can cause harm. One may simply feel a curse has been placed on them to loose their penis, causing a panic.

It is unlikely one would encounter a case of genital retraction syndrome within a Western Nation, however it is possible. While it may be hard for us to understand, remember, the mind is a very powerful device that shapes the world around us. If one feels they have a specific condition strong enough, one can begin to experience symptoms of the condition. What does this mean? It means think positive, as our thoughts shape the world around us.

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One Response to “Genital Retraction Syndrome: Penis Panic”

  1. [...] People who suffer from Genital Retraction Syndrome (GRS) are overcome by the fear that their external genitals (and the breasts, for women) are shrinking and/or retracting into the body to the point of complete disappearance. GRS is a mental condition prevalent in cultures that are often without sufficient medical resources and who attribute the condition to voodoo, witchcraft, or superstition. In Asia and Africa there have been widespread instances of this syndrome called “Penis Panics.” (Link | Photo) [...]

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