Delusional perception revisited

Kasper Møller Nielsen*, Julie Nordgaard, Mads Gram Henriksen

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde
3 Citationer (Scopus)


Delusional perception designates a sudden, idiosyncratic, and often self-referential delusion triggered by a neutral perceptual content. In classical psychopathology, delusional perception was considered almost pathognomonic for schizophrenia. Since delusional perception has been erased from ICD-11 and always been absent in DSM, it risks slipping out of clinical awareness. In this article, we explore the clinical roots of delusional perception, elucidate the psychopathological phenomenon, and discuss its two predominant conceptualizations, i.e., Schneider's well-known two-link model and Matussek's lesser known one-link model. The two-link model posits that delusional perception amounts to an abnormal interpretation of an intact perception, whereas the one-link model posits that the delusional meaning is contained within a changed perception. Despite their differences, both models stress that delusional perception is a primary delusion that takes place within an altered experiential framework that is characteristic of the psychopathological Gestalt of schizophrenia. We discuss the role of delusional perception in future psychopathological and diagnostic assessment and argue that such assessments must be conducted in comprehensive manner, eliciting the psychopathological context within which symptoms and signs are embedded. Finally, we discuss the compatibility of the two models of delusional perception with contemporary cognitive models on delusion and cognitive psychotherapeutic approaches.

Udgave nummer6
Sider (fra-til)325-334
Antal sider10
StatusUdgivet - 2022


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