Fifteen years ago, Dr. E. C. Spitzka1 described under the term "primary confusional insanity," (an approximation of the German title "Verwirrheit" applied to the same mental states) a form of insanity "which develops rapidly on a basis of cerebral exhaustion. Consciousness is blurred in parallelism with the conceptional disturbance and the patients on recovering have, as a rule, but very crude recollections of their condition. Its duration is variable, comprising weeks and months. The prognosis is, as a rule, as good as that of stuporous insanity, which condition it also resembles as to etiology; emotional shock, cerebral overstrain, exhausting diseases and excesses being the principal factors responsible for primary confusional insanity. The patients suffering from this psychosis, after a rapid rise of their symptoms during a period of incubation rarely exceeding a few days, present hallucinations and delusions of a varied and contradictory character. The delusions may resemble those
KIERNAN JG. PRIMARY OR ACUTE CONFUSIONAL INSANITY. JAMA. 1895;XXV(26):1115–1116. doi:10.1001/jama.1895.02430520001001
Coronavirus Resource Center
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.
Create a personal account or sign in to: