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Susto (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈsusto], Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈsuʃtu]) is a cultural illness primarily among Latin American cultures. It is described by Razzouk et al. as a condition of being frightened and "chronic somatic suffering stemming from emotional trauma or from witnessing traumatic experiences lived by others".[1] Normally it is caused when one is frightened to an extent that the person having this experience deems to be the cause of diabetes type II. During the experiencing of fright, it is described as one's soul being separated from the body called Esiritu or Alme.


Among the indigenous peoples of Latin America, in which this illness is most common, Susto may be conceptualized as a case of spirit attack.[2] Symptoms of Susto are thought to include nervousness, anorexia, insomnia, listlessness, fever, depression, and diarrhea.[1]


Susto may be a culturally dependent variation of the symptoms of panic attack, distinct from anxiety and depressive disorders.[1]

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  1. ^ a b c Razzouk D, Nogueira B, Mari Jde J (May 2011). "The contribution of Latin American and Caribbean countries on culture bound syndromes studies for the ICD-10 revision: key findings from a working in progress". Rev Bras Psiquiatr. 33 Suppl 1: S5–20. PMID 21845335. 
  2. ^ Castillo, Richard (1997). Culture & Mental Illness: A Client-Centered Approach. Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole Publishing Company

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