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Caregiver-fabricated illness in a child prescribed long-term opioids and benzodiazepines

Deepa Kattail, MD, MHS, FAAP, Anne Niec, MD, FRCPC


Caregiver-fabricated illness in a child (CFIC) can result in unnecessary, potentially harmful medical investigations and treatment. As pediatric pain has historically been undertreated, the movement for more compassionate treatment has led to an increase in analgesic prescribing in children and adolescents. Overall, this has been a positive change but this may also lead to unintentional harm, particularly if CFIC is not considered as a possibility in the presentation. We present a case in which CFIC was associated with long-term prescribing of opioids, benzodiazepines, and other central nervous system depressants.


analgesics, opioid, caregiver-fabricated illness in a child, Munchausen syndrome by proxy

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