Intermittent explosive disorder (sometimes abbreviated as IED) is a behavioral disorder characterized by explosive outbursts of anger and/or violence, often to the point of rage, that are disproportionate to the situation at hand (e.g., impulsive shouting, screaming or excessive reprimanding triggered by relatively inconsequential events). Impulsive aggression is not premeditated, and is defined by a disproportionate reaction to any provocation, real or perceived. Some individuals have reported affective changes prior to an outburst, such as tension, mood changes, energy changes, etc.
The disorder is currently categorized in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) under the "Disruptive, Impulse-Control, and Conduct Disorders" category. The disorder itself is not easily characterized and often exhibits comorbidity with other mood disorders, particularly bipolar disorder. Individuals diagnosed with IED report their outbursts as being brief (lasting less than an hour), with a variety of bodily symptoms (sweating, stuttering, chest tightness, twitching, palpitations) reported by a third of one sample. Aggressive acts are frequently reported to be accompanied by a sensation of relief and in some cases pleasure, but often followed by later remorse.