Juvenile general paralysis is of interest as illustrating one of the many ways in which syphilis may produce its detrimental effect on the human race. The disease may commence at a very early age; according to Thomson, progressive symptoms may be evident in children as young as three years. Males and females are victims in practically equal proportions. The symptoms are very similar to those of the adult form, progressive dementia being very marked; such variations as are present are due to the more undeveloped mental state of youth, and on the whole it corresponds to the demented or confused type of the adult. Periods of acute excitement, or of mental depression, are met with, and epileptiform seizures, which may be present at any stage, are often observed. Delusions of persecution are not uncommon, and grandiose delusions occur; hallucinations are also evident occasionally at some time during the course. In the younger patients a type of advancing spastic diplegia is most common, and even in older cases spastic symptoms are more prominent than in the adult form. The pathological appearances in the nervous system have the same characteristics as those seen in cases of mature age. The duration is usually from two to four years, although sometimes it may be more protracted.
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