vol. 1, num. 1, 2003

Dissociative Phenomena. Questions and Answers.

Editors: Mario Di Fiorino and Maria Luisa Figueira

Pseudodementia And Dissociative Phenomena

Manuel Paes de Sousa

Pseudodementia And Dissociative Phenomena

Summary. Psychiatric disorders, characterized by non organic deterioration of cognitive functions and reversibility or symptoms remission, have been called pseudo-dementia. In this report the Author, also from a historical perspective, presents many diseases clinically similar to dementia, showing the clinical features helpful in distinguishing pseudo-dementia from dementia, and analyzes with particular attention Ganser’s syndrome and simulated dementia. Psychiatric disorders can mimetized dementia, and relationship between depression and dementia is complex: while depression may mimic dementia, it is more common for depression to be superimposed on dementia, and difficulties in differentiating the two conditions arise because of overlapping symptoms. The extensive discussion about pseudodementia lead to numerous studies, and the Author believes that pseudodementia, due to its eterogeneity, is better conceptualized as a broad category with many subtypes.

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