Disorganized Speech: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 9/24/2020

Disorganized speech is a symptom that frequently is associated with disorders of thought or perception (the inability to form coherent or logical thoughts). Disorganized speech can take many forms, including repetition of words or phrases, nonsensical speech, the invention of new words (neologisms), the appearance of speaking with people who are not there, pressured or rushed speech, jumbled speech (word salad), or other forms of incoherent speech. Disorganized speech is one of the main symptoms of certain forms of schizophrenia, although any condition that impairs thought can cause this symptom.

Disorganized speech may be associated with other symptoms such as auditory or visual hallucinations, unusual behavior patterns, abnormal motor behavior, mood changes (including depression), delusions, and lack of ability to carry out daily functions.

Other causes of disorganized speech


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Jameson, J. Larry, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 20th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2018.