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. 1991 Jun;26(3):119-33.

[Clinical Concept of Alcoholic Dementia]

[Article in Japanese]
  • PMID: 1892448

[Clinical Concept of Alcoholic Dementia]

[Article in Japanese]
N Kato. Arukoru Kenkyuto Yakubutsu Ison. .


Intellectual deterioration, changing in behavior and affect are often seen in association with long continued and heavy alcohol ingestion and such deteriorated states of patients are called alcoholic dementia. A large number of investigators have attempted to designate clinical concept of alcoholic dementia throughout the centuries and many kinds of term like as alcoholic pseudo-paralysis, alcoholic mental deficiency and alcoholic deterioration, etc, have been submitted since the beginning of 19th century. Numerous psychometric studies have indicated cognitive impairment and memory disturbance in chronic alcohol abusers and moreover brain PEG and CT-scan studies have shown sulcal widening and enlarged ventricles to be common in alcoholics. However, alcoholic dementia is hard to classify as a distinct disorder caused by alcoholic ingestion. The reason is lack of specific findings, both clinical and histopathological, like as Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome and other nutritional disorders in alcoholics. Victor, M. describes in his work the majority of patients who have come to autopsy with the clinical diagnosis of primary alcoholic dementia have shown the lesions of the Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome and he postulates alcoholic dementia is heavily contaminated with burned-out Wernicke-Korsakoff disease. The clinical and pathological observations presented by this time represent alcoholic dementia is a residual category for cases in which there are severe impairment of intelligence with marked deterioration of personality following prolonged and heavy drinking.

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