- The term hypercoenesthesiopathy comes from the Greek prefix huper (to exceed a certain boundary), the medical Latin noun coenesthesis - which itself comes from the Greek words koinos (communal) and aisthanesthai (to notice, to perceive) - and the Greek noun pathos (suffering). The term coenesthesis was used during the era of classic psychiatry to denote the 'common sensation' or 'common general sensibility' arising from the sum of all bodily sense impressions. (For a further explanation, see the entry Coenesthetic hallucination.) The French term hypercénesthé-siopathie was introduced in or shortly before 1905 by the French neurologists Paul Camus and Gaston Deny to denote a hypertrophic awareness of one's coenesthetic feelings. A clinical description of hypercoenesthesiopathy, rendered by the French psychiatrists Henri Hécaen (1912-1983) and Julian de Ajuriaguerra (1911-1993), runs as follows: "His whole body, but especially his hands and his teeth increased in volume; the hands grew larger, swelled up progressively, became very hard, and ended up taking on immense proportions; the teeth grew longer, and it appeared to him that they protruded out of his mouth. These impressions were accompanied by a certain anxiety, and brought him, several times, to turning on the light to verify the state of his hands, which he then perceived as having their normal proportions. These sensations were symmetrical, and confined themselves to the upper part of the body; they did not disappear, except during periods of falling asleep and waking up." Camus and Deny classify hypercoenes-thesiopathy as a variant of "coenesthesiopathy and use the term in opposition to the terms " acoenesthesiopathy, hypocoenesthesiopathy, and " paracoenesthesiopathy. Today hypercoenes-thesiopathy would probably be classified either as a " somatic hallucination or illusion, a disorder of embodiment or a disorder of corporeal awareness. Pathophysiologically, hypercoenes-thesiopathy is associated primarily with lesions affecting parts of the parietal cortex involved with embodiment and corporeal awareness (more specifically, the premotor cortex).ReferencesArzy, S., Overney, L.S., Landis, T., Blanke, O. (2006). Neural mechanisms of embodiment: Asomatognosia due to premotor cortex damage. Archives ofNeurology, 63, 1022-1025.Deny, G., Camus, P. (1905). Sur une forme d'hypochondrie aberrante due à la perte de la conscience du corps. Revue Neurologique,9, 461-167.Deny, G., Camus, P. (1905). Sur un cas de délire métabolique de la personnalité lié à des troubles de la cœnesthésie. Archives de Neurologie, 20, 257-268.Hécaen, H., de Ajuriaguerra, J. (1952). Méconnaissances et hallucinations corporelles. Intégration et désintégration de la somatog-nosie. Paris: Masson et Cie., Éditeurs.
Dictionary of Hallucinations. J.D. Blom. 2010.