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fugue




An episode of alerted consciousness in which a person apparently purposefully wanders away from home or work and, in some cases, adopts a mew identity. When the fugue ends, the affected person has no recollection of what has happened.

Fugues may last for hours or days. During a short fugue, the sufferer may be confused and agitated. During a longer fugue, behavior may appear normal but there may be accompanying symptoms, such as hallucinations, feeling unreal, or an unstable mood.

Fugues are uncommon. Causes included dissociative disorders, temporal lobe epilepsy, depression, head injury, and dementia. See also amnesia.


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   • HEALTH AND DISEASE