People who think they are dead

Are you convinced that you are dead? If so, you may suffer from a very rare and deeply bizarre mental illness called Cotard's syndrome. Matter's Erika Hayasaki visited Mexico's National Institute of Neurology and Neurosurgery to learn about this deeply disturbing delusion.

From Matter:


Since it was first documented in 1880, more than a hundred cases of Cotard's have been reported all over the world. There's the 59-year-old woman who was hospitalized in the United Kingdom after reporting feeling like she was "a rotting corpse." She told doctors the blood circulation to her legs was damaged, and her legs were falling off. Then there's the 62-year-old Spanish man who was convinced not only that he was dead, but also that his penis was disappearing. A middle-aged Japanese woman complained that her mind was "completely blank with no thoughts," that there seemed to be no brain in her head, and she could not talk because she'd "lost all her words."

"Living With Being Dead" (Matter)

image: Marlous van der Sloot