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4 definitions found
 for delirium tremens
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Delirium \De*lir"i*um\ (d[-e]*l[i^]r"[i^]*[u^]m), n. [L., fr.
     delirare to rave, to wander in mind, prop., to go out of the
     furrow in plowing; de- + lira furrow, track; perh. akin to G.
     geleise track, rut, and E. last to endure.]
     1. (Med.) A state in which the thoughts, expressions, and
        actions are wild, irregular, and incoherent; mental
        aberration; a roving or wandering of the mind, -- usually
        dependent on a fever or some other disease, and so
        distinguished from mania, or madness.
        [1913 Webster]
     2. Strong excitement; wild enthusiasm; madness.
        [1913 Webster]
              The popular delirium [of the French Revolution] at
              first caught his enthusiastic mind.   --W. Irving.
        [1913 Webster]
              The delirium of the preceding session (of
              Parliament).                          --Morley.
        [1913 Webster]
     Delirium tremens. [L., trembling delirium] (Med.), a
        violent delirium induced by the excessive and prolonged
        use of intoxicating liquors.
     Traumatic delirium (Med.), a variety of delirium following
     Syn: Insanity; frenzy; madness; derangement; aberration;
          mania; lunacy; fury. See Insanity.
          [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

  delirium tremens
      n 1: acute delirium caused by alcohol poisoning [syn: delirium
           tremens, DTs]

From Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 :

  20 Moby Thesaurus words for "delirium tremens":
     alcoholic addiction, alcoholic psychosis, alcoholism, bottle nose,
     delirium alcoholicum, dementia a potu, dipsomania, dream,
     ebriosity, grog blossom, habitual drunkenness, hallucination,
     hallucinosis, heavy drinking, mind-expansion, oenomania, oinomania,
     pathological drunkenness, problem drinking, tripping

From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :

  DELIRIUM TREMENS, med. jur. A species of insanity which has obtained this 
  name, in consequence of the tremor experienced by the delirious person, when 
  under a fit of the disorder. 
       2. The disease called delirium tremens or mania a potu, is well 
  described in the learned work on the Medical Jurisprudence of Insanity, by 
  Dr. Ray, Sec. 315, 316, of which the following is an extract: "it may be the 
  immediate effect of an excess, or series of excesses, in those who are not 
  habitually intemperate, as well as in those who are; but it most commonly 
  occurs in habitual drinkers, after a few days of total abstinence from 
  spirituous liquors. It is also very liable to occur in this latter class when
  laboring under other diseases, or severe external injuries that give rise to 
  any degree of constitutional disturbance. The approach of the disease is 
  generally indicated by a slight tremor and faltering of the hands and lower 
  extremities, a tremulousness of the voice, a certain restlessness and sense 
  of anxiety which the patient knows not how to describe or to account for, 
  disturbed sleep, and impaired appetite. These symptoms having continued two 
  or three days, at the end, of which time they have obviously increased in 
  severity, the patient ceases to sleep altogether, and soon becomes 
  delirious. At first, the delirium is not constant, the mind wandering during 
  the night, but during the day, when its attention is fixed, capable of 
  rational discourse. It is not long, however, before it becomes constant, and 
  constitutes the most prominent feature of the disease. This state, of 
  watchfulness and delirium continues three or four days, when, if the 
  patient recover, it is succeeded by sleep, which, at first appears in uneasy 
  and irregular naps, and lastly in long, sound, and refreshing slumbers. When 
  sleep does not supervene about this period, the, disease is fatal; and 
  whether subjected to medical treatment, or left to itself, neither its 
  symptoms nor duration are materially modified. 
       3. "The character of the delirium in this disease is peculiar, bearing 
  a stronger resemblance to dreaming, than any other form of mental 
  derangement. It would seem as if the dreams which disturb and harass the 
  mind during the imperfect sleep that precedes the explosion of the disease, 
  continue to occupy it when awake, being then viewed as realities, instead of 
  dreams. The patient imagines himself, for instance, to be in some particular 
  situation, or engaged in certain occupations according to each individuals 
  habits and profession, and his discourse and conduct will be conformed to 
  this delusion, with this striking peculiarity, however, that he is thwarted 
  at every step, and is constantly meeting with obstacles that defy his utmost 
  efforts to remove. Almost invariably, the patient manifests, more or less, 
  feelings of suspicion and fear, laboring under continual apprehension of 
  being made the victim of sinister designs and practices. He imagines that 
  certain people have conspired to rob or murder him, and insists that he can 
  hear them in an adjoining apartment, arranging their plans and preparing to 
  rush into his room; or that he is in a strange place where he is forcibly 
  detained and prevented from going to his own home. One of the most common 
  hallucinations is, to be constantly  seeing devils, snakes, vermin, and all 
  manner of unclean things around him and about him, and peopling every nook 
  and corner of his apartment with these loathsome objects. The extreme terror 
  which these delusions often inspire, produces in the countenance, an 
  unutterable expression of anguish; and, in the hope of escaping from his, 
  fancied tormentors, the wretched patient endeavors to cut his throat, or 
  jump from the window. Under the influence of these terrible apprehensions, 
  he sometimes murders his wife or attendant, whom his disordered imagination 
  identifies with his enemies, though he is generally tractable and not 
  inclined to be mischievous. After perpetrating an act of this kind, he 
  generally gives some illusive reason for his conduct, rejoices in his 
  success, and expresses his regret at not having done it before. So complete 
  and obvious is the mental derangement in this disease, so entirely are, the 
  thoughts and actions governed by the most unfounded and absurd delusions, 
  that if any form of insanity absolves from criminal responsibility, this 
  certainly must have that effect. 3 Am. Jur. 5-20. 

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