1.1 SCHIZOPHRENIA- THE DISEASE.
1.1.1 WHAT IS SCHIZOPHRENIA?
Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by a disintegration of the process of thinking and of emotional responsiveness.[ Concise Medical Dictionary,2010] It most commonly manifests as auditory hallucinations, paranoid or bizarre delusions, or disorganized speech and thinking, and it is accompanied by significant social or occupational dysfunction. Onset of symptoms typically occurs in young adulthood,[ Castle D, Wessely S, Der G, Murray RM, 1965-84] with a global lifetime prevalence of around 1.5%.[Bhugra D,2005][ Goldner EM, Hsu L, Waraich P, Somers JM,2002] Diagnosis is based on the patient's self-reported experiences and observed behavior. A laboratory developed test named VeriPsych™ has been released that uses a small sample of a patient's blood to aid in the diagnosis of schizophrenia. [Rathus,1991] The test measures 51 blood-based biomarkers and compares that profile to a biomarker pattern derived from patients that have been medically diagnosed with schizophrenia, resulting in a probability score indicating the likelihood of a patient being positive for the disease.[ Becker T,2006]
Genetics, early environment, neurobiology, psychological and social processes appear to be important contributory factors; some recreational and prescription drugs appear to cause or worsen symptoms. Current psychiatric research is focused on the role of neurobiology, but this inquiry has not isolated a single organic cause. As a result of the many possible combinations of symptoms, there is debate about whether the diagnosis represents a single disorder or a number of discrete syndromes. Despite the etymology of the term from the Greek roots skhizein ( "to split") and phren, phren- ( "mind"), schizophrenia does not imply a "split mind" and it is not the same as dissociative identity disorder—also known as "multiple personality disorder" or "split personality"—a condition...