Left untreated, kleptomania can result in severe emotional, family, legal, work and financial problems. For example, you know stealing is wrong but you feel powerless to resist the impulse, so you may be wracked by guilt, shame, self-loathing and humiliation. You may otherwise lead a moral, upstanding life and be confused and upset by your compulsive stealing.
Examples of complications that kleptomania may cause or be associated with include:
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- Compulsive gambling or shopping
- Arrest for shoplifting
- Alcohol and substance abuse
- Eating disorders
- Kleptomania. In: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-5. 5th ed. Arlington, Va.: American Psychiatric Association; 2013. http://www.psychiatryonline.org. Accessed Sept. 3, 2014.
- Highlights of changes from DSM-IV-TR to DSM-5. American Psychiatric Association. http://www.psychiatry.org/dsm5. Accessed Sept. 3, 2014.
- Hales RE, et al. The American Psychiatric Publishing Textbook of Psychiatry. 6th ed. Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Publishing; 2014. http://psychiatryonline.org/book.aspx?bookid=716. Accessed Sept. 3, 2014.
- Schreiber L, et al. Impulse control disorders: Updated review of clinical characteristics and pharmacological management. Frontiers in Psychiatry. 2011;2:1.
- Talih FR. Kleptomania and potential exacerbating factors: A review and case report. Innovations in Clinical Neuroscience. 2011;8:35.
- Hodgins DC, et al. Cognitive-behavioral treatment for impulse control disorders. Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria. 2008;Suppl 1:S31.
- Grant JE, et al. Kleptomania: Clinical characteristics and relationship to substance use disorders. American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse. 2010;36:291.
- Kung S (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Sept. 22, 2014.
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