Delusional parasitosis and the law

Wednesday, November 13, 2013: 2:45 PM
Meeting Room 18 B (Austin Convention Center)
Matan Shelomi , Dept. of Entomology, University of California, Davis, Davis, CA
This talk examines the role of Delusional Parasitosis / Infestations (DI) in the law. DI is a psycho-dermatological condition in which sufferers falsely attribute skin sensations to an invisible parasite despite all evidence to the contrary. They will seek out entomologists to try to identify their parasite, doctors to prescribe medications, and pest control companies to spray in an otherwise clean house. Legal cases involving DI will be discussed, ranging from malpractice to murder. Then potential issues involving DI will be addressed, such as questions of trial competency and legal protections for scientists.