Behavioural Neurology

Behavioural Neurology / 1994 / Article

Case Report | Open Access

Volume 7 |Article ID 960310 |

H. Doyle, J. Varian, "An Unusual Psychiatric Emergency: Herpes Simplex Encephalitis", Behavioural Neurology, vol. 7, Article ID 960310, 3 pages, 1994.

An Unusual Psychiatric Emergency: Herpes Simplex Encephalitis

Received07 Jan 1994
Accepted06 Jun 1994


A case of fatal herpes simplex virus (HSV) encephalitis, presenting as a psychiatric emergency, is reported. The possibility of HSV encephalitis presenting mainly or solely with psychiatric symptoms is highlighted. HSV can cause a severe form of encephalitis which may present with mainly psychiatric symptoms in some cases. Early treatment with anti-viral agents can reduce mortality and morbidity, but accurate early diagnosis may be very difficult. HSV encephalopathy may mimic psychiatric illness and has been likened to syphilis as the great imitator. The case presented here should serve to raise awareness of the psychiatric features and the need to consider this diagnosis in patients with atypical behavioural disturbance.

Copyright © 1994 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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