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Understanding schizophrenia

Clinical Quiz Do you understand this mental disorder?

Test your knowledge on schizophrenia – a long-term, common and serious mental disorder that causes a number of psychological symptoms such hallucinations, delusions, changes in behaviour and feeling disconnected from your emotions.

Questions

1. Schizophrenia is most often diagnosed at a very early age – between 10 and 15 years old.

True/False

2. Symptoms of schizophrenia are classified into two categories – positive and negative. Hallucinations and delusions are positive symptoms.

True/False

3. Genetic inheritance is the main cause of schizophrenia.

True/False

4. Nice recommends antipsychotic medications as the first-line treatment for newly diagnosed schizophrenia.

True/False

5. Antipsychotics work by increasing dopamine in the brain.

True /False

Discussion

1. False: It is rare before the age of 15. Onset is most common between the ages of 15 and 34.

2. True: Positive symptoms represent a change in behaviour or thoughts. Negative symptoms represent a withdrawal or lack of function such as emotional apathy, lack of drive, poverty of speech, social withdrawal and self-neglect. Each person will have a unique combination of symptoms and experiences.

3. False: Research suggests that a combination of physical, genetic, psychological and environmental factors can make people more likely to develop schizophrenia.

4. True

5. False: Most antipsychotics block the effect of dopamine

References:

NICE guidelines [CG178], February 2014. Psychosis and schizophrenia in adults: prevention and management

NHS Choices – schizophrenia

Mind.org.uk – schizophrenia

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