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Schizophrenia and delusional disorders 

Schizophrenia and delusional disorders
Chapter:
Schizophrenia and delusional disorders
Author(s):

Tom Burns

, and Mike Firn

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198754237.003.0015
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date: 17 October 2019

Schizophrenia is the iconic mental illness. This chapter describes the evolution of the concept by doctors in the early mental hospitals through to modern classifications of its subtypes. The nature/nurture controversy has been particularly fraught in schizophrenia and the possible role of the family in its genesis is considered in detail. Explanatory models such as the ‘schizophrenogenic mother’ and the ‘double bind’, although now only historical, are described because of their hold on the popular imagination. Family factors (‘expressed emotion’) in the maintenance of the disorder are also considered. The role of maintenance medication, clozapine, the identification of relapse signatures, early intervention, and psychosocial interventions are also described.

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