Dirk Gently's Holistic Wiki

Pararibulitis is a fictional nerve disease in the television series Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency.

It causes painful hallucinations, perceived as fully real by the sufferer. Amanda Brotzman and her family are known sufferers of the disease.


Pararibulitis is a nerve disease, where the sufferer experiences painful and terrifying hallucinations, which are experienced and felt as fully real by the sufferer.[1]

The hallucinatory attacks are unpredictable and can be triggered by the slightest real-world stimulus, which is misinterpreted by the brain, which in the attack is then perverted into something horrible and painful.[1] As such the hallucinations are often linked to the real-world stimulus, but magnified thousandfold. For example simply holding an object may seem like it causes physical injury, or a cool breeze may cause the sufferer to feel frostbite.

The potential for pararibulitis is inherited and passed through families. Not all carriers develop the disease. A carrier may develop the disease seemingly spontaneously, though the onset can be aided by outside factors, such as repeated electrocutions in one case.[2]

Medication for pararibulitis sufferers exists, to treat it palliatively, but no cure.

Being fed on by the psychic vampires the Rowdy 3 during a pararibulitis attack removed the attack's effects by sucking away the involved energy and emotions in at least one sufferer, Amanda Brotzman.[3]

Afflicted people[]

  • Pararibulitis is carried by the Brotzman family, and has run in the family for five generations.[1] Known family members that developed the disease are Esther, Amanda, and Todd.

Amanda Brotzman[]

See Amanda Brotzman#Pararibulitis.

After being diagnosed with the disease, Amanda became a recluse and barely left her home in fear of an attack. She continued to take prescription medication that her brother Todd paid for in the hopes of getting better.

Todd Brotzman[]

Throughout most of his youth, Todd faked having the disease to scam his parents out of money. After his sister actually got it, he felt ashamed of his actions as his parents had run out of money and tried to make up for it by paying for Amanda's medicine himself and telling his family that he had recovered.

At the end of the first season, Todd becomes a real victim to the disease and collapses on the floor in a hallucination that his skin is being burned by acid.

In season 2, he takes Amanda's medication, though it eventually runs out. Bergsberg sheriff Sherlock Hobbs, having confiscated Todd's empty pill bottle after witnessing an attack, gives him a medicine initially intended for his epileptic cat, as it contains similar ingredients. These pills work, and Todd is shown taking them throughout the second season.

Aunt Esther[]

While on a phone call, Amanda and Todd discuss their Aunt Esther who suffered from the disease. Amanda remembers her aunt having good and bad days, but Todd only remembers the bad days.

Known Hallucinations[]

  • Breathing feeling like drowning
  • Drumsticks being knives/Knife in palm
  • Air being freezing cold
  • Spontaneous combustion
  • Acid burning through skin
  • Nails through the skin
  • Swarms of insects
  • Long cut through face
  • Barbed wire encircling skin
  • Electricity protruding from palms


  • It is unknown whether attacks can happen more than once. However, as Amanda experienced a knife in her palm twice, it is very plausible.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Horizons
  2. Max Landis on Twitter, 11.12.2016, [1]
  3. Very Erectus