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Indian J Psychiatry. 2003 Oct-Dec; 45(4): 255–256.
PMCID: PMC2952376

Neurobiological Basis of Ganser Syndrome

Abstract

Ganser syndrome continues to be a rare and widely misunderstood condition. While DSM-IV classifies Ganser syndrome as a dissociative disorder, its etiology continues to be debated. There are episodic reports in the literature of Ganser syndrome in patients with head trauma or strokes. However, the mechanisms by which these cerebral insults lead to Ganser syndrome or other dissociative states are largely unknown.A case of a patient with Ganser syndrome with a prior history of stroke and bifrontal infarcts is described. This case demonstrates how organic pathology may predispose a patient to dissociative states, such as Ganser syndrome. We review the relationship between hyperglutamatergic states, caused by stroke and stress, and dissociative symptoms.Ganser syndrome continues to be a rare and widely misunderstood condition. While DSM-IV classifies Ganser syndrome as a dissociative disorder, its etiology continues to be debated. There are episodic reports in the literature of Ganser syndrome in patients with head trauma or strokes. However, the mechanisms by which these cerebral insults lead to Ganser syndrome or other dissociative states are largely unknown.A case of a patient with Ganser syndrome with a prior history of stroke and bifrontal infarcts is described. This case demonstrates how organic pathology may predispose a patient to dissociative states, such as Ganser syndrome. We review the relationship between hyperglutamatergic states, caused by stroke and stress, and dissociative symptoms.

Keywords: Ganser syndrome, stroke, glutamate, dissociative symptoms

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Articles from Indian Journal of Psychiatry are provided here courtesy of Medknow Publications