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Chapter 9. Schizophrenia Spectrum and Other Psychotic Disorders

T. Stroup, M.D., M.P.H.; Ryan Lawrence, M.D.; Atheir Abbas, M.D., Ph.D.; Bradley Miller, M.D., Ph.D.; Diana Perkins, M.D., M.P.H.; Jeffrey Lieberman, M.D.
DOI: 10.1176/appi.books.9781585625031.127540

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Excerpt

Schizophrenia is a brain disorder that generally affects mental functions and behavior. It is associated with a variable course, and outcomes range from complete recovery to severe disability. The most prominent characteristics of schizophrenia are hallucinations, delusions, and disorganization, which may lead to dangerous or bizarre behaviors. More insidious are so-called negative symptoms, such as social withdrawal and diminished emotional engagement, and cognitive impairments that can significantly impair social and occupational functioning. Because onset is usually in late adolescence or early adulthood, schizophrenia and related disorders are a leading cause of disability. Globally, schizophrenia is the fifth leading cause of years lost to disability for men and the sixth leading cause for women (World Health Organization 2008). Adverse consequences include unemployment, violence, hospitalization, medical comorbidities, homelessness, and premature mortality.

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Natural history of schizophrenia.Source. Adapted from Lieberman JA, Perkins D, Belger A, et al: “The Early Stages of Schizophrenia: Speculations on Pathogenesis, Pathophysiology, and Therapeutic Approaches.” Biological Psychiatry 50:884–897, 2001.
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Medical differential diagnosis: conditions that can present with psychosis
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Side effects of selected antipsychotic drugs in common use
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Adverse effects of antipsychotics

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