There are only a few syndromes with eponyms in psychiatry as compared to
medicine & surgery.
Here is a list I have prepared from all my sources of psychiatry..
An acute reaction to severe thiamine deficiency mostly d/t chronic alcohol use.
C/b ocular signs (nystagmus & external ophthalmoplagia)
Higher mental function disturbance(disorientation, confusion, recent memory
Apathy & ataxia.
Peripheral neuropathy & malnutrition may be co-existent.
Also d/t severe thiamine deficiency d/t chronic alcohol use.
C/b amnestic syndrome with gross memory disturbances
Insight often impaired.
A rare disorder most probably d/t alcohol-related nutritional deficiency.
C/b disorientation, personality & intellectual deterioration, hallucinations,
epilepsy, dysarthria, ataxia & spastic limb paralysis.
Atrial or ventricular arrhythmias, especially paroxysmal tachycardia, after
drinking a binge of alcohol in individuals showing no other evidence of heart
Hemp insanity (cannabis psychosis)
Asso with cannabis.
Acute schizophreniform disorder with disorientation & confusion
Lethargy, apathy, loss of interest, anergia, reduced drive & lack of ambition
d/t chronic cannabis use.
Van Gogh syndrome
Dramatic self-mutilation occurring in schizophrenia.
A syndrome of schizophrenia occurring in presence of mental retardation.
A subtype of schizophrenia with acute onset, clouding of consciousness,
disorientation, dream-like states & perceptual disturbances with rapid shifting.
Alice in Wonderland syndrome
Perceptual distortion of shape, size, colour& reciprocal position of objects.
seen with schizophrenia, migraine
Commoner in women 20-40 years.
C/b diffuse anxiety, multiple phobias, panic attacks, depersonalization,
derealization & depressive features.
Othello syndrome (conjugal paranoia)
A psychosis in which the content of delusions is predominantly jealousy
(infidelity) involving spouse.
Clerambault’s syndrome (erotomania)
A psychosis in which the content of delusions is erotic.
Most often in women with erotic conviction that a person with higher status is
in love with the patient.
A syndrome of mental automatism
Folie a deux
Induced delusional disorder c/b sharing of delusions b/w 2 persons.
So is folie a trios, folie a quatre, folie a famille…
Capgras’ syndrome (delusion of doubles)
C/b delusional conviction that other persons in environment are not their real
selves but are their own doubles.
There are 4 types
1. Typical Capgras’ syndrome(illusion des sosies)- pt sees a familiar person as
a stranger who is imposing as the familiar person.
2. Illusion de Fregoli pt falsely identifies strangers as familiar persons.
3. Syndrome of subjective doubles pt’s own self is perceived as being replaced
by a double.
4. Intermetamorphosis pt’s misidentification is complete including both external
appearance & personality.
Delusion that a persecutor is taking on a variety of faces like an actor.
Delusion that one has lost everything- possessions, strength & even bodily
organs such as heart.
Seen in severe depression where pt has extreme nihilistic delusion (e.g. may
think that his bowels are rotting and he will never pass stools again)
Ganser’s syndrome (hysterical pseudodementia)
Commonly found in prison inmates.
C/b vorbeireden- approximate answers- person understands nature of questions but
Lack of concern towards symptoms despite apparent severity of disability
Seen in pts with conversion & dissociation disorder(hysteria).
Briquet’s syndrome (Somatisation disorder)
A chronic or recurrent illness with either a dramatic or complicated medical
A pt with at least 25 unexplained medical symptoms for a diagnosis or with 20-25
unexplained symptoms for a probable diagnosis.
Munchausen syndrome (Factitious disorder, Polysurgis, Professional patients,
Hospital hoboes, Hospital addiction)
Pt repeatedly simulates or fakes diseases for sole purpose of obtaining
Munchausen syndrome by proxy
Pt intentionally produces physical signs & symptoms in another person who is
under pt’s care.
Ekbom syndrome (Restless Legs syndrome)
Pt experiences extremely uncomfortable feeling in leg muscles during
Asso with insomnia.
Asso with hypersomnia.
Sleep apnea commoner in elderly & obese persons, asso with hypersomnia.
Clumsy Child syndrome (Motor dyspraxia, Motor skills disorder, Developmental
C/b poor coordination in daily activities of life.
Idiot Savant syndrome
Pervasive impairment of functions but certain islets of precocity or
splinter functions may remain.
Heller’s syndrome (Disintegrative psychosis)
A type of childhood psychosis with age of onset 3-5 years.
C/b rapid downhill course leading to deterioration & development of neurological
Predominantly in boys.
Less severe form of pervasive developmental disorder
Autism without significant delay in language & cognitive development.
preoccupation with obscure facts
Occurs in girls.
After an apparently normal early development & normal head circumference at
birth, there is deceleration of head growth b/w age of 5-30 months.
Loss of purposive hand movements & acquired fine motor manipulative skills with
subsequent development of stereotyped hand movements.
Attention deficit hyperkinetic disorder, Minimal brain dysfunction, Organic
Gilles de la Tourette’s syndrome
C/b multiple motor tics
Multiple vocal tics
Duration of >1 year
Failure to develop attachment with a parenteral figure & pre-occupation with
Syndromes associated with dementia
Shy-Drager syndrome (Multisystem degeneration)
Steel-Richardson syndrome (progressive Supranuclear palsy)
Binswanger’s disease (subcortical arteriosclerotic encephalopathy)
ALS-Parkinson’s-Dementia complex of Gaum
Syndromes associated with mental retardation
Cri du chat syndrome
Fragile X syndrome
Lesch Nyhan syndrome
De Lange syndrome (Amsterdam dwarfism)
Some Culture-Bound Syndromes are as follows
A culture-bound syndrome prevalent in Indian subcontinent.
C/b complaint of passage of ‘dhat’ in urine.
Multiple somatic symptoms.
May be anxiety, depression or sexual dysfunction associated.
Prevalent in Asia including India.
Affected male pt believes that his penis is shrinking & may disappear into his
abdominal wall & he may die.
Females affected infrequently, believing that their breasts & vulva are
Prevalent in South-East Asia.
C/b sudden, unprovoked episode of rage in which affected person runs about &
indiscriminately injures or kills any person who in encountered on the way.
Latah (Startle reaction)
Prevalent in South-East Asia & Japan.
More in women, c/b automatic obedience, echolalia & echopraxia.
Prevalent in native American Indians.
Pt believes that he has been transformed into a wihtigo, a cannibal monster,
occurring especially during times of starvation.
A defense syndrome, mainly of anxiety but with obsessive features occurring
in young Japanese thrown into a modern industrial society for which they are not
equipped. They feel inadequate, lost & unloved.
Occurs in Latin America.
Pt believes that his body is entered by a magical substance & that he is
altered. It takes on a delusional quality.
Piblokto (Arctic Hysteria)
Occurs in Askimos.
Often female, who screams & tears off her clothes, throw herself on ice in
extremely cold conditions.
She may imitate the cry of a bird or an animal.
The episode lasting for 1-2 hours, f/b amnesia of events.
Other culture-bound syndromes in India are- Suchi-bai syndrome (purity mania),
Ascetic syndrome, Nuptial psychosis & Jhin-jhinia.