Patient Care

Conversion Disorder

What are Conversion and Dissociative Disorders?

Conversion Disorder, also known as functional neurological symptom disorder, is a mental condition in which an individual experiences neurological or physical symptoms that cannot be explained by neurological or medical causes. There is usually an underlying psychological cause to the physical symptoms. These symptoms often cause impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning in one's life.

Dissociative Disorders are conditions that involve involuntary escape from reality and are often associated with disruptions/ breakdowns of memory, awareness, identity, or perception.

There are different types of Dissociative Disorders, including:

  • Dissociative Identity Disorder - Disruption of identity, resulting in two or more distinct personality states.
  • Dissociative Amnesia - An inability to recall important autobiographical information, usually of a traumatic nature.
  • Depersonalisation/Derealisation Disorder - Experiences of unreality and detachment with respect to one's thoughts, feelings, sensations, body, or actions (depersonalisation) or surroundings (derealisation).
What are the signs & symptoms of Conversion and Dissociative Disorders?
Symptoms of Conversion Disorder include:
  • Weakness or paralysis
  • Abnormal physical movement
  • Swallowing difficulties
  • Speech difficulties
  • Seizures
  • Sensory loss or disturbances
Symptoms of Dissociative Disorder include:
  • Significant memory loss of specific times, people, and events (Dissociative Amnesia)
  • Out-of-body experiences
  • A sense of detachment from one's emotions (Depersonalisation/Derealisation Disorder)
  • A lack of sense of self-identity
What are the treatment options for Conversion and Dissociative Disorders?

Conversion and Dissociative Disorders are treated through:

  • Cognitive behavioural therapy to develop skills to better manage stressful situations and symptoms
  • Stress reduction and distraction techniques
  • Physiotherapy or occupational therapy to help to improve one's ability to function (for conversion disorder)
Find A Doctor

Click here to access our Find A Doctor directory for a list of doctors treating this condition across our NUHS institutions.

You can search by -
  • Condition name 'Conversion Disorder' AND
  • Institution
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  • National University Hospital
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