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[Baron Karl F.H. von Munchausen, a fictional character created by Rudolph Erich Raspe, Ger. librarian and scientist, 1736-1794]
A type of malingering or factitious disorder in which the patient may feign illness by self-multilation or deception. When detected, patients with Munchausen syndrome may leave one hospital and appear in the emergency room of another. They are often misdiagnosed, frequently operated upon, and seldom receive timely psychiatric diagnoses and therapy, which might be beneficial.
SEE: factitious disorder