Catalepsy is. .. Catalepsy: causes, symptoms, treatment

Catalepsy is a condition where a person is as if in a dream, while his sensitivity to external and internal influences decreases. The phenomenon is quite rare. A person for a long time is in a state of immobility, even in a very uncomfortable position. He does not react at all to pain, does not feel hunger, does not pay attention to sounds, does not seek to cope with natural need. Psychiatrists consider such a condition a sign of schizophrenia.

Features of the disease

Catalepsy is a pathology characterized by the fact that at the time of an attack a person freezes in a certain position for a fairly long time with the suspension of all vital functions. It may even feel like the patient is dead. Doctors call this state "wax flexibility", because a person can be put in any uncomfortable pose without much effort, which will persist until the end of such a seizure.

catalepsy is

There is such an attack gradually: first begin to numb the cervical and facial muscles, extending to the lower extremities, and it ends in reverse order. Such a state can pass quickly, and can last for weeks and even months.

Quite often it happens during a conversation that such stupor happens. This condition causes so much muscle tension that the patient can easily be lifted by the heels and the back of the head. At the time of the attack, there is a violation of consciousness. If such a seizure occurs in malignant schizophrenia, then the patient is aware of all that is happening. With an odoroid form, a person is immersed in a world of illusions, which is supplemented by fantastic phenomena.

Types of catalepsy

In psychiatry, there is the following classification of catalepsy:

  • simple - in this case the patient sees and hears everything, but can not move;
  • rigid - manifested by increased muscle tone and their resistance to any changes in the position of the body or its parts;
  • pharmacological - caused by the effects of medicines;
  • hypnotic - occurs under the influence of suggestion( hypnosis).

nerve diseases

Astral catalepsy, the state of trance that occurs most often at night, should also be emphasized. Such a short-term impairment of consciousness, many patients explain the action of ghosts, witches or aliens. This state official medicine defines as a violation in the mental sphere.

Causes of

The existing nervous diseases contribute to the development of catalepsy, for example, the catatonic variety of schizophrenia, narcolepsy. Such a deviation is typical of people with increased suggestibility. An experienced hypnotist can easily provoke a cataleptic attack in such a person.

stupor is

This pathology can also develop as a result of hysterical trance. Many researchers regard catalepsy as one of the varieties of narcolepsy. The patient loses control over his body position because of the relaxation of skeletal muscles. The likely cause of the weakening of muscle tone is the transition from the waking phase to the state of paradoxical sleep, bypassing the "slow" and "fast" phases.

It is well known that if such a stupor appeared, this indicates a cerebellar lesion associated with a violation of the frontal lobe of the brain. A provoking factor may also be an infectious disease, such as paralytic poliomyelitis.

Symptoms of

Cataleptic seizures are characterized by complete immobilization and a strong increase in muscle tone. The patient for a long time is in the position in which he was seized by an attack.

This disorder is accompanied by the following symptoms:

  • reduced sensitivity to external and internal stimuli;
  • echolalia( automatic repetition of heard words);
  • breathing loss;
  • echopraxia( repeated seeing gestures);
  • decrease in heart rate.

The attack can last from one minute to several weeks, and sometimes months. The development of it occurs suddenly. The disappearance of stupor causes emotional emotional manifestations in the patient.

This disease is dangerous because a person is able to lose mobility in a potentially dangerous place, where there will be a threat to his health and life.


cataleptic seizures

Such pathological condition is diagnosed on the basis of the collected anamnesis and thorough psychiatric and neurological examination.

Treatment of

Since catalepsy is caused by nerve diseases, it can not be treated on its own, it should be done only by a psychiatrist. Such symptoms are very similar to the symptoms of some motor disorders that occur with various brain lesions, so the doctor should be able to distinguish between them.

Catalepsy is a mental illness, so the emotional state of the patient must be taken into account during the treatment. If he was constantly mocked, tampered or even humiliated, he would have to wait for a long time to improve.

waxy flexibility

For the treatment of this disease use interactive imagagogics - a technique consisting in carrying out work with the internal forces of the body. Its essence is that the patient in an unconscious state is put into motion images and takes them to a conscious level.

During such psychotherapeutic procedure the patient plunges into his inner world and through the emerging images begins to understand his own problems and difficult situations. He tells the therapist about this, which observes the patient's semantic field.

The lack of information-energy interaction indicates that the images were "fantasy", that is, the problem is fictitious or it is gone. True images coming from the depth are always accompanied by a semantic field. Emerging in the process of the vision session, a highly qualified doctor-psychotherapist is able to correctly decipher.


Thus, catalepsy is a disease of the psyche, the treatment of which should only be carried out in a specialized clinic under the supervision of an experienced physician. This is an extremely unpleasant mental disorder, dangerous for its suddenness. It is difficult, but can be treated, during which the perception of the problem is corrected.