Author(s): Benke T, Kurzthaler I, Schmidauer Ch, Moncayo R, Donnemiller E
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Abstract We describe the case of a young male patient, SN, who suffered a MR-documented ischaemic lesion of both dorsomedial thalami and presented with a transient maniform syndrome. SN's neuropsychological, structural and functional imaging findings are compared with similar reported cases and are discussed in the framework of fronto-subcortical circuits and their proposed behavioural disorders. SN's mania was characterized by restlessness, mood elevation, a tendency for pleasurable activities, inflated self-esteem and loss of disease awareness. Other symptoms were sexual disinhibition, tactlessness, abnormal discourse, and reduced need for food and sleep. His neuropsychological assessment revealed an anterograde amnesia, and an impairment of frontal-executive functions. A SPECT-study showed diaschisis-related areas of hypoperfusion in both prefrontal regions which were interpreted as equivalents of SN's frontal-dysexecutive syndrome. In addition, there was a perfusion deficit in the right orbitofrontal cortex, which was taken as the imaging correlate of SN's secondary mania and personality disorder. These findings suggest that SN's mania and his other symptoms result from the twofold disruption of fronto-subcortical connections, namely of the right orbitofrontal loop which is concerned with mood regulation and socially appropriate behaviour, and of the dorsolateral prefrontal loop which mediates executive cognitive functions.
This article was published in Neuropsychologia
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy