Multiple Personality Disorder (also called Dissociative Identity
Disorder) is a hotly-debated and controversial subject in its own
right; there is no unanimity of opinion on whether it truly exists.
Nevertheless, there have been reports indicating that a single
individual may, in different states of consciousness, exhibit varied
clinical symptoms, as if one "personality" has a disease, while the
others do not. I have gathered some information on this phenomenon.
For reasons of copyright, I am posting just brief excerpts here; you
may want to read some of these articles in their entirety. The
articles are fascinating.
"Within a given individual, multiple disease states can exhibit
themselves exclusively of each other, depending on the state of
consciousness ('personality') currently activated in the conscious
mind. Thus, with one personality expressing itself in the conscious
mind/body system, the individual can show all the clinical symptoms of
diabetes, for example, and require insulin -- while a shift into
another personality may result in no presence of any disease state or
perhaps the clinically-confirmed appearance of a cardiovascular
condition requiring entirely another type of medication and treatment.
Thus, clinical measurements show changes not only in immunoreactivity
when the individual switches from one personality to another but in
bodily functions and metabolism as well, as the subject becomes
hypertensive in one personality, diabetic in another, and neither of
these in yet other states of consciousness (Hall, N.R.S. et al., 1994;
Cosh J., 1996; Hirshberg C. & Barasch M., 1995)."
SelfQuest: FREUD'S INNUENDO & JAMSHID'S CUP
"Research reported over the last decade on some of those suffering
from multiple personality disorder (Hall, 1994; Barasch & Hirshberg,
1995). What the studies report is the bona fide appearance of clinical
symptoms of a particular medical ailment with the manifestation of a
'personality' in consciousness, requiring the specific appropriate
medicines and treatment to sustain function and life. All the while
the association of another state of consciousness in the same
subject's mind creates an entirely different set of clinical symptoms
of pathology to precipitate, and no pathology appearing whatsoever
when a third state of consciousness presents in the conscious mind.
Thus, a diabetic in one 'personality' becomes a cardiac patient in
another state of consciousness and shows no medical pathology at all
when another schizoid fragment of consciousness presents itself
through yet another state of mind. The confirmation of genuine
clinical medical symptoms of disease, concurrent with specific
psychological states of consciousness in the subject, demands an
understanding that supersedes the casual and common misunderstanding
and misuse of the labels 'hypochondria' in medicine and psychiatry,
and further demonstrates the influence of consciousness beyond the
limits of conventional mechanistic mind/body notions of causality and
Barasch, M. & Hirshberg, C. (1995). Remarkable recovery. London: Headline Books.
Hall, N.R.S. (1994). Advances, 10, 7-15."
SelfQuest: Redefining the Metaphysics of Science
"[Candace Pert, Ph.D]: Emotions are in two realms. They can be in the
physical realm, where we?re talking about molecules whose molecular
weight I can tell you, and whose sequences I can write as formulas.
And there?s another realm that we experience that?s not under the
purview of science. There are aspects of mind that have qualities that
seem to be outside of matter. Let me give you an example. People with
multiple personalities sometimes have extremely clear physical
symptoms that vary with each personality. One personality can be
allergic to cats while another is not. One personality can be diabetic
and another not.
[Bill] Moyers: But the multiple personality exists in the same body.
The physical matter has not changed from personality to personality.
Pert: But it does. You can measure it. You can show that one
personality is making as much insulin as it needs, and the next one,
who shows up half an hour later, can?t make insulin.
Moyers: So in the person with multiple personalities, the brain is
releasing different messengers.
Pert: That?s one possibility. We just haven?t done the research to know that yet."
The Truth Seeker Journal: The Chemical Communicators
"Recent work on multiple personality disorder suggests that a patient
may exhibit a disease (eg diabetes) when in one personality, but not
others. This is is discussed 'The Holographic Universe' by Michael
Talbot. It is possible for some multiple personality subjects to
switch their personalities at will, instantly removing and
re-introducing the symptoms of diseases associated with different
Personal Pages of Tony Copple: Recovering from Disease
"Frequently a medical condition possessed by one personality will
mysteriously vanish when another personality takes over.
Dr. Bennet Braun of the International Society for the Study of
Multiple Personality, in Chicago, has documented a case in which all
of a patient's subpersonalities were allergic to orange juice, except
one. If the man drank orange juice when one of his allergic
personalities was in control, he would break out in a terrible rash.
But if he switched to his nonallergic personality, the rash would
instantly start to fade and he could drink orange juice freely.
Allergies are not the only thing multiples can switch on and off. If
there was any doubt as to the control of the unconscious mind has over
drug effects, it is banished by the pharmacological wizardry of the
multiple. By changing personalities, a multiple who is drunk can
instantly become sober. Different personalities also respond
differently to different drugs.
Braun records a case in which 5 milligrams of diazepam, a
tranquilizer, sedated one personality, while 100 milligrams had little
or no effect on another...
There are cases of women who have two or three menstrual periods each
month because each of their subpersonalities has its own cycle.
Speech pathologist Christy Ludlow has found that the voice pattern for
each of a multiple's personalities is different, a feat that requires
such a deep physiological change that even the most accomplished actor
cannot alter his voice enough to disguise his voice pattern.
One multiple, admitted to a hospital for diabetes, baffled her doctors
by showing no symptoms when one of her nondiabetic personalities was
There are accounts of epilepsy coming and going with changes in personality."
(From page 99 of "Holographic Universe," by Michael Talbot)
Amazon: Holographic Universe
It is worth noting that the reference sources cited in the material
posted above, such as the books "Remarkable Recovery" and "Holographic
Universe," are not scientific treatises. They are more closely related
to metaphysics or parapsychology, and rely upon a good deal of
anecdotal data. In several hours of searching, I found very little
hard evidence from scientifically reputable sources. Studies of
differing brain activity and cerebral blood-flow patterns in patients
diagnosed with MPD have been demonstrated to exist, however:
"Having a sense of self is an explicit and high-level functional
specialization of the human brain. The anatomical localization of
self-awareness and the brain mechanisms involved in consciousness were
investigated by functional neuroimaging different emotional mental
states of core consciousness in patients with Multiple Personality
Disorder (i.e., Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID)). We demonstrate
specific changes in localized brain activity consistent with their
ability to generate at least two distinct mental states of
self-awareness, each with its own access to autobiographical
trauma-related memory. Our findings reveal the existence of different
regional cerebral blood flow patterns for different senses of self. We
present evidence for the medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) and the
posterior associative cortices to have an integral role in conscious
PubMed: Abstract of "One brain, two selves"
My Google Search Strategy:
Google Web Search: "multiple personality OR personalities" OR mpd OR
"dissociative identity disorder" diabetes OR diabetic
Thanks for an interesting question. I hope the material I've posted is
helpful. If anything is unclear or incomplete, or if a link doesn't
work for you, please request clarification; I'll gladly offer further
assistance before you rate my answer.