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Types Of Schizophrenia

There are several types of schizophrenia.

Catatonic Schizophrenia

In this subtype of schizophrenia there is involvement of the muscular system either in the sense of hypermobility (excess muscle activity) or else in the sense of hypo-mobility (lack of muscle activity). With the immobility presentation the patient may present with bizarre postures.

Often associated with this is an echolalia, where the patient repeats like a parrot a word or phrase that another person just spoke. Another symptom is common with catatonic schizophrenia, namely echopraxia, where movements of another person are imitated repetitively. There are dangers of malnutrition and self-inflicted injury. During an extreme excitement there is a danger of self-harm or a danger that the person in this state might harm others.

Undifferentiated Schizophrenia

If all the criteria for schizophrenia as mentioned above are met, but none of the subtypes mentioned above, then the psychiatrist diagnoses this subtype of schizophrenia. This type seems to not be as responsive to treatment as for instance paranoid schizophrenia.

Residual Type Schizophrenia

In this type of schizophrenia there has been a major episode of schizophrenia before, but the symptoms do not display psychotic features (like delusions, hallucinations, disorganized behavior or speech). However, there are other symptoms of schizophrenia present. This clinical entity is important to recognize as it can either lead to a complete remission (meaning “temporary cure”) or else it can indicate an impending full-blown episode. In the latter case it is like the silence before the thunderstorm. The third alternative is that it stays for many years in a more stable fashion.

Schizophreniform Disorder

In this disorder the patient has symptoms of schizophrenia, but the duration is shorter than the 6 months requirement for schizophrenia. On the other hand the duration is longer than 1 month, below which it would be labeled “brief psychotic disorder”. This diagnosis is either made in retrospect when the patient has recovered and the overall duration of he illness is known. Or it is a “provisional” diagnosis assuming that it will not last longer than 6 months(or 1 month with treatment). It is much less prevalent than schizophrenia with a lifetime prevalence of 0.2%. About 1/3 of patients recover in less than 6 months and are cured. The remaining 2/3 of patients progress either to schizophrenia or to schizoaffective disorder (Ref.2)

 Types Of Schizophrenia

Types Of Schizophrenia



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2. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, (DSM-IV),American Psychiatric Association, Washington,DC,1994.

3. Dr. Shaila Misri at the 46th St. Paul’s Hosp. Cont. Educ. Conference, November 2000, Vancouver/B.C./ Canada.

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Last modified: September 26, 2014

This outline is only a teaching aid to patients and should stimulate you to ask the right questions when seeing your doctor. However, the responsibility of treatment stays in the hands of your doctor and you.