Pretense of a Paradox: Factitious Intersex Conditions on the Internet

Academic Article


  • False claims of having an intersex condition, taking the form of factitious disorder, have occurred historically but are even more frequently observed in the era of the Internet. Three cases are presented that had previously been reported as genuine in print media, television programs, and online postings. Probable motivations include emotional nurturance, self-aggrandizement, denial of being transgendered, and fascination with being intersex. Persons with factitious intersex conditions may interfere with peer-group support and spread misinformation. While acknowledging the reality of intersex conditions in some people, we advise a high index of suspicion and, as needed, verification of claims. © 2012 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Cadet P; Feldman MD
  • Start Page

  • 91
  • End Page

  • 96
  • Volume

  • 24
  • Issue

  • 2