Surgical castration, which involves removal of the testes, is effective in significantly reducing levels of testosterone in blood plasma. This form of treatment for paraphilias, however, is generally reserved for more serious offenders than exhibitionists (violent rapists and pedophiles with a history of repeated offenses, for example).
Other treatment methods
Another method of treating patients with exhibitionism disorder, used more frequently in the 1970s and 1980s than today, is electroshock aversion. While a mild electric shock was administered, the patient was shown pictures, projected onto a screen, of men exposing themselves. In 2002, aversion therapyinvolves asking the patient to fantasize a sequence of events leading up to his exhibitionism. Then, a very unpleasant scene is inserted at a crucial point in the sequence. The patient might, for example, be asked to imagine a police officer approaching as he exposes himself, or to think of his target fighting back or laughing at him.
Another treatment method that is often offered to people with exhibition disorder is social skills training. It is thought that some men develop paraphilias partially because they do not know how to form healthy relationships, whether sexual or nonsexual, with other people. Although social skills training is not considered a substitute for medications or psychotherapy, it appears to be a useful adjunctive treatment for exhibitionism disorder.
Rebecca J. Frey Ph.D., The Gale Group Inc., Gale, Detroit,