Ellert R. S. Nijenhuis

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According to 19th century French psychiatry and contemporary clinical observations, dissociation pertains to both psychological and somatoform components of experience, reactions, and functions. Because such an instrument was lacking, we aimed to develop a self-reporting questionnaire measuring what we propose to call somatoform dissociation. Patients with(More)
In this study, the prevalence and severity of traumatic experiences as reported by patients with dissociative disorders and with other DSM-IV psychiatric diagnoses were compared. Furthermore, the predictive value of emotional, physical, and sexual trauma with respect to somatoform and psychological dissociation was analyzed. In contrast with comparison(More)
Patients with complex dissociative disorders remain in alternating psychophysiological states which are discrete, discontinuous, and resistant against integrative tendencies. In this contribution, a parallel is drawn between animal defensive and recuperative states that are evoked in the face of severe threat and the characteristic responses of dissociative(More)
Having a sense of self is an explicit and high-level functional specialization of the human brain. The anatomical localization of self-awareness and the brain mechanisms involved in consciousness were investigated by functional neuroimaging different emotional mental states of core consciousness in patients with Multiple Personality Disorder (i.e.,(More)
OBJECTIVE Imprecise conceptualizations of dissociation hinder understanding of trauma-related dissociation. An heuristic resolution for research and clinical practice is proposed. METHOD Current conceptualizations of dissociation are critically examined. They are compared with a new theory that incorporates classical views on dissociation with other(More)
OBJECTIVE The Theory of Structural Dissociation of the Personality (TSDP) proposes that dissociative identity disorder (DID) patients are fixed in traumatic memories as "Emotional Parts" (EP), but mentally avoid these as "Apparently Normal Parts" of the personality (ANP). We tested the hypotheses that ANP and EP have different biopsychosocial reactions to(More)
BACKGROUND In accordance with the Theory of Structural Dissociation of the Personality (TSDP), studies of dissociative identity disorder (DID) have documented that two prototypical dissociative subsystems of the personality, the "Emotional Part" (EP) and the "Apparently Normal Part" (ANP), have different biopsychosocial reactions to supraliminal and(More)
The role of dissociation in (complex) posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been insufficiently recognized for at least two reasons: the view that dissociation is a peripheral, not a central feature of PTSD, and existing confusion regarding the nature of dissociation. In this conceptual article, the authors address both issues by postulating that(More)
The authors hypothesized that there would be a similarity between animal defensive responses to variable predatory imminence and injury and certain somatoform dissociative symptoms of trauma-reporting patients who have dissociative disorder. As a first test of this hypothesis, 12 somatoform symptom clusters consisting of clinically observed somatoform(More)
Biased attention for threatening stimuli has been associated with many forms of psychopathology. Attention to threatening faces presented below perceptual thresholds was assessed in patients diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder using a pictorial emotional Stroop task. Patients were tested in two different identity states, in one of which they(More)