Cotard Delusion

Cotard delusion is a rare condition marked by the false belief that you or your body parts are dead, dying, or don’t exist. It usually occurs with severe depression and some psychotic disorders. It can accompany other mental illnesses and neurological conditions.


Cluster Number:
Wiki Number:
Diagnosis: W050
US Patients: Cotard Delusion
World Patients:
Sex Ratio:
Age Onset:
Brain Area:
Symptoms: neural misfiring in fusiform gyrus (bottom of the brain); lesions in the parietal (top center) lobe;
Progression: belief one does not exist or is dead; not recognize own face; ( called “derealization”)
Medications: schizoprhenia or psychosis
Therapies: antidepressants, antipsychotics, and mood stabilizers


The world-wide medical research
reports chosen for each diagnosis 

Clicking each title opens the
PubMed article’s summary-abstract.

  • Xylological Variant of Reverse Fregoli Syndrome, Delusions of Being a Tree
    by Harsimran Singh Bakhshi on June 15, 2021

    INTRODUCTION: The delusion of being a living animate non-animal object has not heretofore been reported.

  • Cotard Syndrome in an Adolescent With a First Episode of Psychosis
    by Analise E McGreal on May 3, 2021

    This case report describes a unique presentation of Cotard syndrome in an 18-year-old female patient experiencing first-episode psychosis. Cotard syndrome was first described in 1880 by Jules Cotard as a novel subtype of anxious depression and is presently understood as a rare cluster of mood and psychotic symptoms centered on nihilistic delusions including the absence of organs and a perception of being dead. Although rare, Cotard syndrome has been described in a variety of neurological and...

  • Commentary: Diagnostic Challenges in Evaluating Adolescents
    by Amir Garakani on May 3, 2021

    Three cases presented in this issue highlight diagnostic challenges in evaluating adolescents, in particular those with a constellation of symptoms that includes hallucinations. These cases raise the question of the accuracy of patient reports and the importance of further exploring symptoms before rushing to a diagnosis or treatment. The first case involved an 18-year-old female patient with Cotard syndrome. She had the syndrome's typical delusions and hallucinations, but her case was unusual...

  • "Cotard's Syndrome", a Description of Two Cases. Delusion of Negation in Melancholia Versus Delusion of Negation in Paranoia
    by Andrea C Casas López on March 18, 2021

    In 1880, Jules Cotard described a set of delusions in the form of negations that later became his eponymous syndrome. Cotard's syndrome is an uncommon condition characterised by the presence of nihilistic delusions in which the person thinks that "they are dead or that the world no longer exists". This document describes two cases in which a broad and enriching semiology is evidenced from a descriptive point of view, which allows us to review them together with Cotard's syndrome in the light of...