Schizophreniform Disorder

Schizophreniform Disorder

Schizophreniform Disorder

Schizophreniform disorder is a mental health condition characterized by psychotic symptoms such as delusions, hallucinations, disordered thinking, disorganized speech, and behavioral disturbances which are present for at least one month and less than six months.

Schizophrenia vs Schizophreniform Disorder

A distinction between schizophrenia and schizophreniform disorder is that occupational, academic, and/or social functioning is impaired in schizophrenia whereas this isn’t necessarily the case with schizophreniform disorder. Moreover, the onset of schizophrenia is often gradual — over a number of months or years — whereas the onset of schizophreniform disorder can be relatively rapid.

Prevalence

The male to female ratio of schizophreniform disorder is 1:1. The onset of symptoms in men is typically between the ages of 18 to 24 and in women 18 to 35. The rates of schizophreniform disorder are higher in developing countries compared to developed countries.

Symptoms of Schizophreniform disorder:

The duration of the psychotic symptoms is the main differentiating factor between schizophreniform disorder and schizophrenia, with the latter lasting longer than six months.

As with schizophrenia, people with schizophreniform disorder can also experience negative symptoms such as:

  • Reduced range and expression of emotions – flat affect
  • An inability to experience pleasure – anhedonia
  • Decreased or absent speech – alogia
  • A lack of motivation – avolition
  • Social withdrawal
  • A lack of insight

Causes of Schizophreniform disorder:

Doctors don’t know why it happens. A mix of things may be involved, including:

  • Genetics: A tendency to develop Schizophreniform disorder may pass from parents to their children.
  • Brain structure and function: People with schizophrenia and Schizophreniform disorder may have a disturbance in brain circuits that manage thinking and perception.
  • Environment: Poor relationships or very stressful events may trigger Schizophreniform disorder in people who have inherited a tendency to develop the illness.

Risks of  Schizophreniform Disorder:

The outlook for people with schizophreniform disorder varies depending upon the nature, severity, and duration of the symptoms, but approximately two-thirds of those diagnosed with this condition go on to develop full-blown schizophrenia.

Treatment for Schizophreniform Disorder:

There is no known way to prevent schizophreniform disorder from occurring. However, early diagnosis and intervention can help decrease the disruption that the condition can cause on a person’s ability to function and improve their quality of life.

Various treatment options are available for schizophreniform disorder including

  • Medication – Anti-psychotic drugs such as olanzapine and quetiapine can help to reduce the severity and duration of symptoms.
  • Psychotherapy / talking therapy – Cognitive behavioral therapy can equip people with schizophreniform disorder with the coping and problem-solving skills needed to improve functioning and promote recovery.
  • Social support
  • Educational interventions
  • Admission – Hospitalization may be necessary if symptoms are severe and/or there is a risk to the patient’s safety and/or that of others.

Symptoms of Schizophreniform disorder:

The duration of the psychotic symptoms is the main differentiating factor between schizophreniform disorder and schizophrenia, with the latter lasting longer than six months.

As with schizophrenia, people with schizophreniform disorder can also experience negative symptoms such as:

  • Reduced range and expression of emotions – flat affect
  • An inability to experience pleasure – anhedonia
  • Decreased or absent speech – alogia
  • A lack of motivation – avolition
  • Social withdrawal
  • A lack of insight

Causes of Schizophreniform disorder:

Doctors don’t know why it happens. A mix of things may be involved, including:

  • Genetics: A tendency to develop Schizophreniform disorder may pass from parents to their children.
  • Brain structure and function: People with schizophrenia and Schizophreniform disorder may have a disturbance in brain circuits that manage thinking and perception.
  • Environment: Poor relationships or very stressful events may trigger Schizophreniform disorder in people who have inherited a tendency to develop the illness.

Risks of Schizophreniform Disorder:

The outlook for people with schizophreniform disorder varies depending upon the nature, severity, and duration of the symptoms, but approximately two-thirds of those diagnosed with this condition go on to develop full-blown schizophrenia.

Treatment for Schizophreniform Disorder:

There is no known way to prevent schizophreniform disorder from occurring. However, early diagnosis and intervention can help decrease the disruption that the condition can cause on a person’s ability to function and improve their quality of life.

Various treatment options are available for schizophreniform disorder including

  • Medication – Anti-psychotic drugs such as olanzapine and quetiapine can help to reduce the severity and duration of symptoms.
  • Psychotherapy / talking therapy – Cognitive behavioral therapy can equip people with schizophreniform disorder with the coping and problem-solving skills needed to improve functioning and promote recovery.
  • Social support
  • Educational interventions
  • Admission – Hospitalization may be necessary if symptoms are severe and/or there is a risk to the patient’s safety and/or that of others.
Sources WEBMD | WIKIPEDIA – Flat Affect | WIKIPEDIA – Anhedonia | WIKIPEDIA – Avolition | WIKIPEDIA – Psychotherapy