History of parcopresis
The term “parcopresis” was first coined in 2008 by Chalabi in his book on parcopresis. To date, there has been very little research on this condition, with one case report (a detailed report of the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatmentof an individual patient), a clinical guideline (a document aimedat guiding decisions regarding identification, management, and treatment of particular conditions), and three studies being conducted.
In 2011, Maia Barros published a case report on parcopresis detailing the diagnosis and treatment of a 23-year-old male. During assessment, Maia Barros identified symptoms consistent with psychological distress and anxiety conditions (e.g., social anxiety disorder) such as prominent fear of negative evaluation and avoidance behaviours.Cognitive behavioural therapy delivered alongside anti-anxiety medication was found to reduce parcopresis symptoms.
Regarding assessment of parcopresis, research in this area has been very limited. To date, the only validated assessment tool for parcopresis is the Shy Bladder and Bowel Scale by Knowles and Skues (2016). The Shy Bladder and Bowel Scale is unique as it is the first measure to assess both parcopresis and paruresis (difficulty or inability to urinate in restrooms due to overwhelming fear of perceived scrutiny), is short and easy to complete, and displays strong diagnostic properties. Click HERE for further information about the Shy Bladder and Bowel Scale.
Following on from research by Knowles and Skues, in 2019 Kuoch Meyer, Austin, and Knowles conducted two studies on parcopresis. The first study involved investigating whether a model for social anxiety called the extended bivalent fear of evaluation could be used to explainparcopresissymptoms. The second study explored the similarities and differences between parcopresis, and a closely related condition called paruresis. Through their research, Kuoch and colleagues empirically identified that processes involved in social anxiety, could also be used to explain parcopresis symptoms. These findings will help to assist researchers and clinicians with their investigation and treatment of paruresis. See the parcopresis and social anxiety disorder section for further details.