Schizophrenia, an Introduction

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Kristov Dorney
Professor Harnos
Intro to psychology

I) Abstract- In this paper I will be discussing schizophrenia. We will review what it is, its causes, symptoms, and the history of the disorder, any treatments available and a long-term prognosis of the Illness. A)Schizophrenia is defined by the DSM-IV as “the chronic debilitating illness characterized by perturbations in cognition, affect and behavior, all of which have a bizarre aspect.” It may also cause delusions, often bizarre, and usually auditory hallucinations. B) Symptoms are separated into two categories positive and negative. Positive symptoms are an excess or distortion of normal functions these include Hallucinations, delusions and disorganized speech. Negative symptoms are restrictions of the range and intensity of emotions, Alogia, avolition and the flat affect are all negative symptoms of schizophrenia. C) The DSM-IV criteria for diagnosis are having two of the above symptoms within a one year period or less if successfully treated. Social/occupational dysfunction for a significant portion of the time since onset. Persistence of disturbance for a period in excess of six months. Schizoaffective and mood disorders have been ruled out. Disturbance is not due to the direct physiological effects of a substance or general medical condition. Finally how the disturbance relates to pervasive developmental disorders. III) Schizophrenia is believed to be widely caused by a biological element. Current research of the disorder proposes that it is caused by a genetic vulnerability coupled with environmental and psychosocial stressors. The neurodevelopmental theory developed by Daniel R. Weinberger states that schizophrenia develops from “a subtle defect in cerebral development and disrupts late-maturing, highly evolved neocortal functions, and fully manifests later in adult life.” IV) Antonio is a 24 year old adopted single unemployed Hispanic bilingual, He has been...
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