Edited by Brian P. Pace, MA, Assistant Editor.
The Lancet, British Medical Journal, and other medical periodicals in Great Britain
have lately been discussing the question whether jealousy can be regarded
as a disease. Considering the number of physicians who have fallen victims
to the morbid jealousy of inebriate husbands when suddenly called to a previously
unknown parturient woman, the denial that jealousy can be at times morbid
As SPITZKA pointed out nearly two decades ago ("Insanity: Its Classification,
Diagnosis and Treatment"): Delusions of alcoholism relate to the sexual organs,
sexual relation and to poisoning. This fact is so constant a one that the
combination of a delusion of mutilation of the sexual organs, with the delusions
that the patient's food is poisoned and that his wife is unfaithful to him
may be considered as nearly to demonstrate the existence of alcoholic insanity
as any one group in mental pathology can prove anything. With this there are
unpleasant hallucinations. There is this peculiarity of insane inebriates,
that their acts are not consistently regulated by their delusions. . . .
JEALOUSY AS A DISEASE.. JAMA. 1998;279(18):1438J. doi:10.1001/jama.279.18.1438