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[Mental and physical symptoms in alcoholics after alcohol withdrawal--comparing with involutional melancholia patients].

[Article in Japanese]

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Department of Psychiatry, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, Japan.


As a factor of recurrence of drinking in patients with alcoholic dependence, emotional disorders accompanied by alcohol dependence has been noted in many reports. Particularly, it is noted to be very likely that depression after abstinence is an incentive to re-start drinking. In this study, we investigated depressive feeling in aspects of psychiatric and physical subjective symptoms after abstinence in patients with alcohol dependence, and compared the symptoms with those in patients with involutional depression. On analysis of the major component of psychiatric subjective symptoms, a sense of alienation, emotional instability, anxiety, and aggressiveness were observed. In involutional depression, depressive feeling, somnipathy, anxiety, self accusation/sense of guilt, delusion of culpability were observed. On analysis of the major component of physical subjective symptoms, autonomic nervous symptoms accompanied by feebleness, hysterical neurosis-like autonomic nervous symptoms, reduced sexual libido, anorexia, hydrodipsia/sweating were observed. Similarly, in patients with involutional depression, hysterical neurosis-like autonomic nervous symptoms, anorexia, elevation of tonus, general malaise, and hydrodipsia were noted. Differences in status were emphasized in comparison between the two groups in both analyses. Unlike involutional depression that exhibits the current features of depression, patients with alcohol dependence showed a sense of alienation, emotional instability, anxiety, and aggressiveness, reflecting self-uncertainty and loss of self-respect. Drinking may be re-started to relieve or reduce tension and frustration in such conditions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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