Cenesthesia and sensory-motor disturbances as mechanisms generating madness: The history of a concept in French psychiatry
"Objective To describe the French psychiatric tradition that considers cenesthopathies and psychomotor and psycho-sensory mechanisms as generators of madness. Method A historical review of the literature is presented in the form of a succinct overview of the main authors having contributed to this line of approach and understanding of psychosis (Cotard, Séglas, Guiraud, Clérambault, etc.). This study also includes a number of French authors who have theorized cenesthopathies and cenesthetic disorders and made important contributions to this issue, although they do not consider these disorders to be the mechanisms underpinning psychotic onset or constituting its pathogenesis. Results French psychiatry throughout its history has made important contributions to the pathogenic study of psychosis. This tradition has viewed the most primitive elements of psychotic onset as being linked to psycho-sensory, psychomotor and cenesthetic disorders. Some authors have proposed specific syndromes implicating psycho-sensory and cenesthetic disturbances, but they consider that these disturbances do not necessarily underpin the onset of psychosis and do not account for its pathogenesis. Discussion Although authors do not all have the same ideas about these disturbances, cenesthesia and the psycho-motor-sensory spectrum have been prominent in hypotheses and developments across French psychiatry. Conclusion This French tradition provides researchers and practitioners in the field of psychosis and its pathogenesis with a theoretical and practical viewpoint on the primary mechanisms that operate in the first moments of psychotic onset and on their relationship with the course of this disorder. © 2017 Elsevier Masson SAS"
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