Pathological yawning in a patient with anxiety and chronic disease anaemia

Taskapilioglu O., Akkaya C., Sarandol A., Kirli S.

JOURNAL OF PSYCHOPHARMACOLOGY, vol.23, no.2, pp.211-213, 2009 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 23 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Doi Number: 10.1177/0269881108089812
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.211-213
  • Bursa Uludag University Affiliated: Yes


Yawning, frequent in daily life, is accepted as a complex arousal reflex. Excessive yawning may be due to neurological, psychiatric, infectious, gastrointestinal or metabolic diseases. This reflex has also been associated with different selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. We report a female patient, with excessive yawning, who was on selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor treatment with the diagnosis of generalised anxiety disorder. She was then found to have endometrial carcinoma. Her complaints of palpitation, shortness of breath and loss of energy might be explained by a psychiatric disease and/or anaemia. Previous anaemic periods and partial response of her psychiatric symptoms during last 3 years alerted us to think about an organic cause. Investigations for chronic disease anaemia resulted in diagnosis of endometrial carcinoma. This case is a good example showing misdiagnosis caused by medical stigmatisation.