Medical Questions > Conditions and Diseases > Neurological Disorders Forum

noxtious smells olfactory hallucinations?

Must Read
How can you tell if a headache is serious, or not? What types of headaches are there? Get started learning the facts about headache here....
Do you know when to seek help for headache symptoms? Learn more about symptoms of the four different types of headaches...and when to go to a doctor here....
Headaches can be caused by various medical conditions. Learn which tests doctors use to diagnose problem headaches...and who you should see to start diagnosis....
what do you know about olfactory hallucinations?
Did you find this post helpful?

User Profile
replied November 5th, 2011
Especially eHealthy

Many people are sensitive to certain smells, but in an olfactory hallucination, also called phantosmia, the patient detectes smells that aren't really there.

The odors detected in phantosmia vary from person to person and may be pleasant or unpleasant. They may occur in one or both nostrils and usually cannot be masked by foods or other odors.

Phantosmia can be caused by temporal lobe seizures, sinusitis, brain tumors, migraine, Parkinson's disease, or a stroke. It can also commonly occur as a result of a head injury or upper respiratory infection.

Because phantosmia can be an indication of a serious illness or disorder, patients should contact their physician if they experience such symptoms.

Note that phantosmia is different from another disorder of the sense of smell, known as parosmia. Parosmia is where a smell is present in the environment but it is distorted. Parosmia can occur with damage to the olfactory system, such as after a severe respiratory infection. In this situation, there's usually also a loss of sense of smell.

So, if you are experiencing phantosmia frequently, you may want to consider seeing a neurologist for an evaluation.

Good luck.
Did you find this post helpful?
Quick Reply