Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors
Intermittent explosive disorder is marked by sudden, unpredictable acts of violent, aggressive behavior in otherwise normal persons. The reaction is out of proportion to the event that triggers or provokes the outburst.
What is going on in the body?
The exact cause of intermittent explosive disorder is not known. Some evidence suggests there may be a link between this disorder and mild neurological problems similarto those associated with some learning disabilities.
What are the causes and risks of the condition?
The cause of intermittent explosive disorder is not known. It may be caused by an abnormality in the nervous system. Things that increase a person’s risk for the disorder include the following:
Symptoms & Signs
What are the signs and symptoms of the condition?
A person who has intermittent explosive disorder:
A person who has this disorder is not violent or aggressive most of the time. The outbreaks of severe rage and anger are usually isolated. The amount ofaggression is out of proportion with the incident that triggered the outburst.
Diagnosis & Tests
How is the condition diagnosed?
Diagnosis of intermittent explosive disorder begins with a medical history and physical exam. A complete psychological evaluation should be done to rule out another medical or mental disorder.
Prevention & Expectations
What are the long-term effects of the condition?
Someone who has intermittent explosive disorder may have social or legal problems as a result of the aggressive behavior. The behavior may also cause problems at home or school.
What are the risks to others?
Intermittent explosive disorder is not contagious.
Treatment & Monitoring
What are the treatments for the condition?
Medicines and psychologicaltreatment are generally used to treat this disorder.Psychotherapy with a focus on awareness of appropriate limits in socialsettings is often helpful.
What are the side effects of the treatments?
Side effects of medicines vary. They may include allergic reactions and drowsiness.
What happens after treatment for the condition?
With effective treatment, the person can live a normal life.
How is the condition monitored?
Any new or worsening symptoms should be reported to the healthcare provider.
Article type: xmedgeneral