Koontz False memory

Mental illness in children

Delusional misidentification syndromes may be superimposed on neurological or psychiatric disorders and include delusional beliefs that the people, objects, or places around the patient change or are made to change with one another. In this paper, an adolescent patient displaying Capgras syndrome, metamorphosis, reverse-intermetamorphosis, misidentification of reflection, and reduplicative paramnesia was presented. The findings that our patient struggled with visuospatial tests applied in the acute phase as well as the observation that she refused to meet her family face-to-face while accepting to speak on the phone may support the role of right hemisphere and visuospatial functions in the development of those syndromes. Further studies or case series evaluated more extensively are needed to reveal the relationship between right hemisphere functions and delusional misidentification syndromes.

1. Introduction

“Delusional misidentification syndromes” may be superimposed on neurological or psychiatric disorders and include delusional beliefs that the people, objects, or places around the patient change or are made to change with one another. They can be divided into Capgras and Fregoli delusions as well as intermetamorphosis and twinning (döppelgänger). Rarer phenomena such as misidentification of self in the mirror, reduplicative paramnesia, and clonal multiplication of the self are also listed among those syndromes. Capgras syndrome involves a belief that the patients’ acquaintances (especially close relatives) are replaced with exact look-alikes. On the other hand, a patient with reduplicative paramnesia believes that a person, a place, or an event around himself/herself to be copied exactly. Intermetamorphosis involves a belief that people around the patient exchange places entirely, not limiting themselves to disguises or superficial appearances. Reverse-intermetamorphosis involves a belief that another person replaced the patient both physically and mentally while misidentification of reflection involves a belief that the reflection in the mirror is not of the patient but of a different person resembling the patient . Here, we present an adolescent patient with Capgras syndrome, intermetamorphosis, reverse-intermetamorphosis, misidentification of reflection, and reduplicative paramnesia. The patient was deemed to be worthy of presentation both due to the rarity of those syndromes in adolescence and for being evaluated with neuropsychological tests.

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