Phantosmia

What is Phantosmia?

Phantosmia is an olfactory hallucination. A hallucination is the sensory perception of something with no basis in reality, as opposed to an olfactory illusion, which is a misinterpretation of a physical stimulus; in the case of an odor it is known as parosmia. Phantosmia is the perception of a smell in the complete absence of any physical odor. The perceived odor can range from pleasant to disgusting. Although the causes of phantosmia are uncertain, it often occurs with neurological and psychological disorders such as schizophrenia, mood disorders, Parkinsons disease, epilepsy, neuroblastoma, and frequent migraines.

Galen also mentioned olfactory hallucinations in his work and stated that these hallucinations constitute the signs of an oncoming disease.

Different types of phantosmia include: Unirhinal (single nostril), episodic, and recurrent, where the activation of brain's GABAergic system seems to play a role in the inhibition of the unirhinal phantosmia.

Treatments for phantosmia range from drug therapies (e.g., venlafaxine) and brain stimulation therapies to invasive surgical procedures involving removal of the olfactory bulbs or olfactory epithelium.

The word phantosmia is a noun of Greek origin. It is composed of two words: (1) phant- meaning "phantom" and (2) -osmia (from osme) meaning "smell".

Questions and answers on "Phantosmia"

yes please,
I have been smelling diesel fuel for the past three weeks, nobody else does.

When I'm busy in the day I don't notice as much. Night...

doctor1 MD

Brief Answer:
Phantosmia...

Detailed Answer:
Hi

Thanks for posting the query; I will try my best to help you with this problem.

Your brief history...

Read Full Thread   Ask a Doctor Now

I bathe daily, including washing behind my ears with soap. However, every day there is a bad smell behind my right ear. There is no bad smell...

doctor1 MD

Brief Answer:
Explained

Detailed Answer:
Hello and Welcome

I appreciate your concern

The area behind the ear is not as exposed and infections can...

Read Full Thread   Ask a Doctor Now

Hi, I am 61. Five months began a sore throat (lefthandside)....visit to GP did not identify anything...regardless Ive tried antibiotics and all the...

doctor1 MD

Brief Answer:
I am also agree with your doctor

Detailed Answer:
Hi Sir,
I have gone through your query; and I am also agree with your doctor that...

Read Full Thread   Ask a Doctor Now

Health resources related to Phantosmia

Recent questions on Phantosmia


Ask Question
Doctor Image
MD

Hi, I am Dr. Andrew Rynne (Family Physician). I will be guiding you through the process. Please write your question below.

Related Drugs/Medications
Related Treatment/Therapy
Related Procedures