Capgras Syndrome Treatment,Causes,capgras disorder Symptoms: Capgras syndrome is a mental illness of a person, in which his ability to identify people around him or himself is impaired. As a result of such a violation, the patient convinces acquaintances that they have a double, with which he is often seen and met. Also, people can attribute the existence of a second fictional self and accuse him of committing some actions. This syndrome was first described in 1923 by a psychiatrist in France under the name “Illusions of a Double,” but after some research it was renamed in honor of the very scientist, Joseph Capgra.
The main Capgras Syndrome Causes
Since the appearance of this pathology, many scientists have tried to establish the true cause of its occurrence. Many factors have been identified that are capable of adversely affecting a person’s mental health in any way, but a single conclusion does not exist today. Opinions of researchers diverged in search of the original cause of the disease, but still common efforts identified several conditions that more often than others lead to its development in humans. All of them have a common point of application for harm – the visual part of the cerebral cortex, which is responsible for facial recognition.
Exogenous Capgras Syndrome Causes
This category of causes includes factors associated with an external damaging effect on the human body. Such an impact does not always lead to the development of such a syndrome and refers to the pathology of internal organs.
In the future, the following states may manifest themselves in the form of this violation:
Traumatic lesion. When receiving damage that can somehow touch the occipital region of the cerebral cortex, very often there may be an impetus to the occurrence of such a pathology. This can happen to anyone, regardless of gender, age or emotional state. Violations that occur during injury, manifested in the loss of data this area of its main function. As a result, almost immediately after a fall or impact, the person already exhibits the first symptoms.
Neurosurgical intervention. Sometimes it happens that mentally healthy people acquire twin syndrome in the postoperative period. The fact is that human neural connections are the structure of an extremely fine organization and very poorly perceive any interference from outside. Therefore, it is often after such manipulations that a failure in the transmission of impulses occurs, any structural disturbances occur, which can later lead to the development of this pathology.
Stroke . It occurs predominantly in old age and still more often in men. This pathology implies an insufficient supply of brain cells with oxygen, which is acute. As a result, the latter die and lose their ability to perform their functions. If such a lesion relates to the above-mentioned area of the cortex, then it may well lead to impaired identification and perception.
Hemorrhage . The cause, which may be due to traumatic injury, hemorrhagic stroke, aneurysm rupture, systemic vasculitis, and many other conditions. The blood, which for one reason or another has left its course, moves freely. As a result, it fills in various spaces, among which may also be the occipital region. The result is the destruction of neurons and their connections. It is because of their insolvency that the processes that are involved in Capgra syndrome are violated.
Endogenous Capgras Syndrome Causes
The problems of this type include pathological conditions, which are initially aimed at worsening the emotional and mental health of people from the inside. Therefore, from the very beginning, their main signs will be behavior and thinking disorders.
Among the most common causes of this category are:
Alcoholism . A factor that is often overlooked by its prevalence may be the only serious cause of the disease. It happens in most cases only at deep and neglected stages. Due to excessive use of alcohol, its toxicity to the body exceeds all possible limits. The accumulation of harmful products of its oxidation in cerebral cells not only impairs their function, but also leads to their death.
Schizophrenia . Manifestations of this disease are very closely related to the twin syndrome. The presence of a paranoid component in it can also cause a violation of personal identification. That is why both pathologies are often confused or merged into one. The problem is that one of the consequences of the arisen delirium in schizophrenia may be Capgra’s disease, which requires special care and a special approach to therapy.
Age changes . After a certain period of time, the human body loses many properties and functions. All brain structures are subject to such action. The predominance of the aging process makes people vulnerable to the action of any damaging factor. They can also accumulate many harmful substances, which often exert their adverse effects in the form of violations of a different nature.
The main forms of Capgra syndrome
The described syndrome continues to be an interesting finding for writing many scientific works in psychiatry and medicine in general. Dozens of studies aimed at the differential diagnosis of the disease from other pathologies are conducted. In the course of the work done, several different versions of its classification were described.
The presented syndrome can manifest itself as two completely different diseases. To establish the correct diagnosis, it is necessary to study the existing problem very precisely and understand which subtype it is. In view of the way the patient describes the imaginary twin, the following types are presented:
Visible counterpart . This type of pathology is characterized by the reality of a fictional character. In this case, the patient will claim that he exists not only in his imagination, but in real life too. A person will also try to show a person, touch her and at the same time can very realistically describe his feelings. That is why such a state will be very simple and easy to learn. After all, people literally fall into aggression, trying to get everyone around to notice the twin.
Invisible . With this type of disease, a person often tries to hide his ideas about this. The first symptoms can appear only when the patient begins to ascribe the commission of any work to the twin. It will not be possible to confirm its existence in real time, but the patient does it with the help of a statement of the work done by him. It doesn’t matter if it’s good or bad. People claim that it was the fictional man who made it, and they will try to convince everyone else of this.
Depending on the patient to whom the existence of the twin belongs, these types of diseases are distinguished:
Personal . This type of disease is characterized by the fact that a person is sure that there is a second self. He is able to describe it and assert existence in real time and space. In this situation, people talk about the affairs committed by their doubles, and not by them personally. The disease often resembles a split personality, but in this case there are two completely different people. The only thing that unites them is external similarity.
Surrounding . In this situation, the identity of the patient remains fully preserved. He does not apply to any of the manifestations of the disease, because he sees the pathology in another person. The patient claims that one of his relatives, friends or relatives has a copy. They can talk about seeing her, communicating with her. In some cases, people become addicted to this idea and try to warn their acquaintances about the existence of a certain doubler.
Animal . Strange as it may sound, the cases of Kapgra syndrome in relation to animals were described. People who had pets, could accurately assure others that they had a copy. Some patients can live in a society of two dogs or cats for quite a long time. Their diversity was quite gratifying, and only relatives of the person reported deviations.
Sometimes the symptoms of the disease can be applied not to one character, but to several family members or friends at once.
Capgras Syndrome Symptoms & Manifestations
Signs of this pathology can last from a couple of days to several weeks. Such diversity depends on the type of initial cause and whether it is eliminated after the development of the syndrome. Each manifestation in varying degrees helps the specialist to establish the correct diagnosis. Some signs refer to the main, others – to the subsidiary. But to accurately determine the pathology to manage any one of them is impossible.
Among the main symptoms of Capgra syndrome are the following:
Burdened history . This category includes all the health problems that have ever bothered a person, and the presence of relatives with similar mental disorders. The first point is to pay attention to the childhood period of life. It is very important to find out how the patient was at a young age, to learn about his problematic periods of life and unhappy love. It is also important the presence of mental disorders in someone from the nearest pedigree. It is believed that such genetic relationships can play a huge role in the development of the disease and therefore indicate its presence.
Suspicion . A person with the syndrome presented is called strange by others. The fact is that he has a special, interested look, inconsistency. Behaves fussily, looking for any misbehavior or strange action in his friends. Such people can resort to snooping, spend a lot of time looking out the window, and expect incomprehensible personalities to appear. It constantly seems to them that everything is wrong all around, and they suspect everyone who is caught in it.
Crazy talk . It happens that the disease begins to manifest crazy fantasies of the patient. For the first time, they are usually noticed by the closest people. It is with them that he can share his thoughts about the oddities around. It will be about the possible substitution of people, the presence of some kind of twins and plots against them. Many do not pay attention to such statements from friends, but some from that moment begin to understand the seriousness of the situation.
Identification problems . This symptom is considered the most reliable manifestation of the syndrome. Its essence lies in the fact that a person of young or middle age cannot identify people he knows. Initially, he himself will somehow hide his misunderstanding and try not to tell anyone about his thoughts. With the gradual deterioration of his condition, it will come to the point that the patient will very sharply reject meetings and conversations with his earlier familiar surroundings. Because of his uncertainty about who is standing in front of him now, he cannot behave freely with them.
Aggressiveness . Sometimes there are cases in which patients do not have friends who can help them. Moreover, they behave very harshly and mockingly towards them. Such a reaction from the environment can not only leave the patient alone with his problem, but also make him defend his opinion on this matter. Sometimes similar situations lead to anger, aggression and inappropriate behavior.
Cowardice . At the very beginning of the disease, obsessive ideas in a person’s head terrify him. He can’t feel safe anywhere. The constant feeling of having a twin makes people always be alert and expect it to appear. Because of this, there is a feeling of fear, insecurity, fear of loved ones who may not be the ones they say they are.
Features of The Capgras Syndrome Treatment
Capgras syndrome in psychiatry, modern doctors are trying to prevent. But in case he still appeared in a person’s life, there are many ways of therapy. It is worth saying that this pathology responds well to treatment, although it requires special attention and close monitoring. The main principle is the combination of different methods to speed up the final result.
The first and most important guideline in choosing any therapy is patient consent to its use. After all, only then can we hope for a full recovery. The main goal of psychotherapy is to establish contact with the patient. Sometimes only at this moment leave the first few sessions. But only when this goal is achieved can a positive result be achieved.
Among all the variants of this therapy, the most frequently used are the following:
Reframing . So call a completely new method of providing psychological assistance. His goal – to change the opinion of man. With the use of this method, experts are trying to convince the patient of the incorrectness of his thoughts. Do this either by bringing the absurdity of his story, or by proving the complete impossibility of the existence of fictional doublers.
Reality testing . This method presents several psychological issues. All of them are veiled under absolutely simple tasks, and in order to answer them, you do not need to spend a lot of time thinking. This list is provided to the patient. After he answers them, the second part of the session begins. During it, the doctor analyzes the results, telling the patient about them. This makes it possible to show a person all his problems and fears, and also to find a way to solve them.
Medicines for Capgras Syndrome Treatment
It is almost impossible to cure double syndrome without the use of any drugs, because the cause of its appearance is hidden in organic brain damage. That is why it is necessary to use certain types of medicines to eliminate its effects and return the person to normal life. The current standards of treatment provide not only a comprehensive effect, but also the use of several types of medicines.
The most famous today are the following groups of drugs:
Neuroleptics . This class includes substances that, due to their mediated effect on receptors in neural connections, have the ability to inhibit the production of delusions. Already after the first intake of the drug, positive symptoms appear and for some time the imaginary doubler disappears.
Antidepressants . Their use in this situation is aimed at calming the patient. Reducing its activity, including about the fictional twin, often leads to positive results. Providing additional sedation helps the patient to relax, eliminates anxiety and panic fear.
Anticonvulsants . This type of drug has achieved widespread use over the past few years. This happened because they are able to inhibit areas of increased activity in the cerebral cortex. In this case, it is the occipital region, which produces pathological symptoms. Reception of these medicines can last from ten days to several years, depending on the condition of the patient.
Therapy of this violation is conducted by courses due to the fact that he has a tendency to relapse. Therefore, the use of drugs is justified even in remission.