Abstract Previous studies of the electroencephalograms of patients with delirium have demonstrated a close correlation between changes in the electrical activity of the brain and the level of consciousness, but no correlation with the more personal aspects of behavior, such as the character or expression of anxiety, the nature of sense deceptions or the content of thought.1 The earliest changes in the electroencephalogram consisted of a progressive decrease in the frequency to the 6 to 8 per second range. In cases of more severe delirium there were increasing irregularity, disruption of synchrony with the appearance of low voltage fast activity and, finally, development of much high voltage irregular, slow activity with a frequency of 2 to 6 cycles per second. The severity of the electroencephalographic changes was related to the intensity, duration and reversibility of the noxious factors involved and to the premorbid status of the central nervous system, but References 1. Romano, J., and Engel, G. L.: Delirium: I. Electroencephalographic Data , Arch. Neurol. & Psychiat. 51:356 ( (April) ) 1944. 2. Engel, G. L., and Romano, J.: Delirium: II. Reversibility of the Electroencephalogram with Experimental Procedures , Arch. Neurol. & Psychiat. 51:378 ( (April) ) 1944. 3. Gibbs, F. A.; Gibbs, E. L., and Lennox, W. G.: Effects on the Electroencephalogram of Certain Drugs Which Influence Nervous Activity , Arch. Int. Med. 60:154 ( (July) ) 1937. 4. Davis, P. A.; Gibbs, F. A.; Davis, H.; Jetter, W. W., and Trowbridge, L. S.: The Effects of Alcohol upon the Electroencephalogram (Brain Waves) , Quart. J. Stud, on Alcohol 1:626, 1941. 5. Mirsky, I. A.; Piker, P.; Rosenbaum, M., and Lederer, H.: Adaptation of the Central Nervous System to Various Concentrations of Alcohol in the Blood , Quart. J. Stud, on Alcohol 2:35, 1941. 6. Jetter, W. W.: Studies in Alcohol: Diagnosis of Acute Alcoholic Intoxication by Correlation of Clinical and Chemical Findings , Am. J. M. Sc. 196:475, 1935. 7. Engel, G. L.; Romano, J.; Ferris, E. B., Jr.; Webb, J. P., and Stevens, C. D.: A Simple Method of Determining Frequency Spectrums in the Electroencephalogram: Observations on Effects of Physiologic Variations in Dextrose, Oxygen, Posture, and Acid-Base Balance on the Normal Electroencephalogram , Arch. Neurol. & Psychiat. 51:134 ( (Feb.) ) 1944.
Archives of Neurology & Psychiatry – American Medical Association
Published: Jan 1, 1945