Ganser Syndrome

What is Ganser Syndrome?

Ganser syndrome is what is labeled as a factitious disorder. With this disorder people mimic behaviors and traits of individuals who really suffer from some form of mental illness.

Why do individuals embrace this disorder?

Normally a person who embraces this disorder is one who is seeking attention, so they portray the symptoms of mentally or even physically ill person for their person gain, be it attention or financial. These individuals are willing to undergo test, affects of medications on the body to gain the attention and sympathy that they want from society and family members.

What are some of the common symptoms of Ganser syndrome?

Individuals who suffer from Ganser syndrome magnify several symptoms such as:

Seem confused
Make strange statements
Report hearing voices
Report have hallucinations
Short periods of odd behavior
Hysterical paralysis – reports of losing part of physical functioning

One of the most associated symptoms of this syndrome is vorbeireden, this is when an individuals give absurd answers to common questions.

What are the causes of Ganser Syndrome?

There are no physical problems that show to lead to Ganser syndrome. Researchers believe it the condition stems from exposure to extreme stress and/or avoidance of responsibility. It is common for individuals with this condition to be diagnosed with other forms of antisocial disorders.

What are the statistics on developing this syndrome?

This syndrome is very rare in occurrence, it is known to affect men more than women and often begins in late teen or early adulthood.

How is Ganser syndrome diagnosed?

The diagnosis of this condition is a little difficult, because first a doctor must “play along” with the information that the patient is providing. Usually after a through examination, if no physical reason can be found for the symptoms being claimed a referral is made to a mental health professional. They will use assessment tools along with the exclusion of no found physical cause to make their diagnosis.

How is Ganser Syndrome Treated?

The first step in treatment is to rule out any physical reason for the problems that the individual is claiming. After that, the persons safety (and others) is of most importance if the patient is acting in any dangers or harming mode.

Since Ganser syndrome is likely to be triggered by some form of stress exposure, once that situation has diminished it is possible that the symptoms of Ganser will go away for the patient. It is important that person suffering from this condition obtain the psychiatric treatment, such as counseling that they need to overcome the situations that trigger Ganser. Medication is not normally prescribed for individuals suffering from Ganser.

Sources: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 4th ed