Functional Neuroimaging in Hysteria and Catatonia
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The neural concomitants of hysteria and catatonia remain largely unknown. The distinction between hysterical symptoms and those that are feigned is clinically challenging. Recent functional neuro-imaging data showed that the neural correlates of these two disorders can be disentangled. It was also shown that hypnotic paralysis activates similar brain areas to those observed in conversion hysteria, supporting the view that hypnosis and hysteria might share common neurophysiological mechanisms. In catatonic patients, SPECT and PET studies showed dysfunctions of prefrontal and parietal cortices that possibly account for some of its motor, affective and behavioural disorders. Taken together, these studies, although few in number, shed new light on the neuronal correlate of conscious and unconscious sensorimotor and cognitive processing in difficult psychiatric symptoms.
KeywordsPrefrontal Cortex Positron Emission Tomography Study Prefrontal Area Somatization Disorder Akinetic Mutism
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