The concept of schizophrenia is coming to an end – here’s why

Here is a wonderful article about the concept of schizophrenia that makes me both happy and challenged at the same time.  This article talks about how the diagnosis of schizophrenia may really be many different diagnoses lumped into one.  He argues for some type of psychosis spectrum disorder and each person who suffers would fall somewhere on the continuum depending on the symptoms displayed.

As a nurse, I am concerned about the disparities in life expectancy for those suffering with this diagnosis.  I think our method of treating the body and the mind separately may turn out to be part of the problem that lessens the life expectancy of the diagnosed schizophrenic person.

He also talks about the schism between the nature vs nurture factions in the concept of schizophrenia.  He states that there is growing evidence to support both factions, therefore reducing the need for outright conflict between factions.

I hope you click over and read this truly articulate and stimulating article.  I hope it gives you something to chew over and stew about as it has given to me.  Won’t you let me know what your thoughts are about this article?

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The concept of schizophrenia is coming to an end – here’s why

August 24, 2017 4.43am EDT

The concept of schizophrenia is dying. Harried for decades by psychology, it now appears to have been fatally wounded by psychiatry, the very profession that once sustained it. Its passing will not be mourned.

Today, having a diagnosis of schizophrenia is associated with a life-expectancy reduction of nearly two decades. By some criteria, only one in seven people recover. Despite heralded advances in treatments, staggeringly, the proportion of people who recover hasn’t increased over time. Something is profoundly wrong.

Part of the problem turns out to be the concept of schizophrenia itself.

Arguments that schizophrenia is a distinct disease have been “fatally undermined”. Just as we now have the concept of autism spectrum disorder, psychosis (typically characterised by distressing hallucinations, delusions, and confused thoughts) is also argued to exist along a continuum and in degrees. Schizophrenia is the severe end of a spectrum or continuum of experiences.

Jim van Os, a professor of psychiatry at Maastricht University, has argued that we cannot shift to this new way of thinking without changing our language. As such, he proposes the term schizophrenia “should be abolished”. In its place, he suggests the concept of a psychosis spectrum disorder.

Another problem is that schizophrenia is portrayed as a “hopeless chronic brain disease”. As a result, some people given this diagnosis, and some parents, have been told cancer would have been preferable, as it would be easier to cure. Yet this view of schizophrenia is only possible by….read the rest of this article here.

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