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n. a state of acute anxiety, seen especially in certain cultures (such as that of the Chinese of SE Asia), characterized by a sudden belief that the penis is shrinking into the abdomen and will disappear: the sufferer is convinced that disappearance of the penis means death. Occasionally women have a similar belief that their breasts are disappearing into their body. It is usually treated with tranquillizing drugs and reassurance.

Subjects: Psychology — Medicine and Health.

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