Self-harm - an overview of the tools used to assess non-suicidal self-harming behaviors

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Introduction: Non-Suicidal Self-Injury (NSSI) is the deliberate injury to one’s own body intended to cause mental or physical harm to oneself. In view of the growing scale of the NSSI, especially among young people without identifying any other psychiatric disorders, the disorder was included in both DSM-5 and ICD10 as independent diagnostic entity. Many etiopathogenetic hypotheses and research tools assessing various aspects of NSSI have been developed.

The aim of the work is to present and discuss the most commonly used scales for NSSI assessment.

Method: A review of available literature was made using the databases Medline / PubMed, using the key words: “self injury”, “self-mutilation”, “non-suicidal,”, “NSSI”, “self-harm” and time descriptors: 2005-2017

Results: Available tools were divided into three groups: I- scale of self-assessment made by the patient, II- assessment made by the clinician, and III- auxiliary scale.

Conclusions: None of the available scales covers the complexity of the NSSI phenomenon. For the overall NSSI assessment, several NSSI assessment tools are suggested, taking into account both self-assessment scales and clinical evaluation.

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