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In psychology, logorrhea or logorrhoea (from Greek λογορροια (logorrhoia); from λόγος (logos), meaning "word", and ῥοία (rhoia), meaning "flow") is a communication disorder, sometimes classified as a mental illness, resulting in excessive wordiness and sometimes incoherent talkativeness. Logorrhea is present in a variety of psychiatric and neurological disorders including aphasia, localized cortical lesions in the thalamus, mania, or most typically in catatonic schizophrenia.
Examples of logorrhea might include talking or mumbling monotonously, either to others, or more likely to oneself. This may include the repetition of particular words or phrases, often incoherently. The causes of logorrhea remain poorly understood, but appear to be localized to frontal lobe structures known to be associated with language. As is the case, for example, in emotional lability in a wide variety of neurological conditions, other symptoms take priority in clinical management and research efforts. Other symptoms include excessive talking, words that avoid any logic or reason, words that may offend other people and random words which hearers may ascribe unintended meaning to.
Logorrhea should not be confused with pressure of speech, which is characterized by the "flighty" alternation from topic to topic by tenuous links such as rhyming or punning. Logorrhea is a symptom of an underlying illness, and should be treated by a medical professional. Several possible causes of logorrhea respond well to medication.
In popular culture
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- "Glossary". Medical Student Teaching Resource. Newcastle University.