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Wilson, G.W. (1934). III. Typical Personality Trends and Conflicts in Cases of Spastic Colitis. Psychoanal Q., 3:558-573.

(1934). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 3:558-573

III. Typical Personality Trends and Conflicts in Cases of Spastic Colitis

George W. Wilson

It is not my intention in this paper to give complete case histories (these will be published later), but only to indicate in a series of cases a general type of conflict-situation and solution which seems to be constant and prevalent in cases of spastic colitis.

The first patient was a forty year old man who was referred to the Institute by his physician with a diagnosis of spastic colitis. He had had careful gastro-intestinal studies which confirmed the diagnosis. His symptoms had been severe for a period of three years during which time his diarrhoea varied from a minimum of six mucous bowel movements daily to a maximum of twenty. He had tried every recommended form of medicinal and dietary treatment with only slight modification of his symptoms. These had begun three years before, approximately six months after having lost in stock speculations a large fortune which he had accumulated entirely through his own efforts. Prior to this time he had never had gastrointestinal disturbances.

In appearance he was a small man of the pyknic type with clear-cut features, expressionless face and a distinctly phlegmatic manner; he gave the impression of being quite ill—i.e., he walked slowly with the aid of a cane and appeared confused and unsure of himself. Like all the cases in this series he consented to an analysis only as a last resort. He was the oldest of three children, the next being a sister three years younger and the last a brother five years his junior. He was uncertain as to the date of his father's death, but thought it was either four or five years ago and that his death was due to paralysis following an accident.


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