BMJ Case Reports 2013; doi:10.1136/bcr-2012-008372

Visual hallucinations in photographs in Parkinson's disease

  1. Joseph Friedman2
  1. 1Department of Neurology, Boston University Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
  2. 2Department of Neurology, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Okeanis Vaou, dimiark{at}


Visual hallucinations are reported in 16–37% of drug-treated patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) and are the most common hallucinations in PD. We report two patients with PD with symptoms that uniquely integrate visual hallucinations and delusions. We report two cases of patients with PD with visual hallucinations who saw the persistence of these hallucinations in photographs. These pictures were taken to prove the absence of these hallucinations. We believe this is the first description of this peculiar phenomenon, in which hallucinations or illusions could be replicated in photographs. Both patients had delusions associated with the images and we speculate that the images they saw in the photographs represent a further delusion, hence a ‘delusional hallucination’ or ‘delusional illusion.’ We believe that delusions fostering hallucinations are rare.

Register for free content

The full text of all Editor's Choice articles and summaries of every article are free without registration

The full text of Images in ... articles are free to registered users

Only fellows can access the full text of case reports (apart from Editor's Choice) - become a fellow today, or encourage your institution to, so that together we can grow and develop this resource

Don't forget to sign up for content alerts so you keep up to date with all the case reports as they are published, and let us know what you think by commenting on the Editor's blog

Navigate This Article