The DSM-5: The Diagnosis Of Schizophrenia

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The DSM -5 describes Schizophrenia in terms of a severe, chronic, and potentially disabling thought disorder (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). The disorder is characterized by positive and negative symptoms. The diagnosis of Schizophrenia cannot currently be made based on the results of a diagnostic test or laboratory assessment; instead the modern diagnosis of schizophrenia is based on descriptive patterns of behavior, psychopathology (positive and negative symptoms) that can be reliably assessed (Tsuang, Glatt, & Faraone, 2011). At first, symptoms of schizophrenia appear as confusing and shocking. For family members, it is usually difficult to cope with such a person because of the sudden change in behavior. …show more content…
I try, but it just won’t stop.” (#11) “The voice is so realistic that it’s hard to realize it is not real: “It’s weird because you—you don’t know whether you’re actually hearing…what other people don’t hear until you realize that they’re not responding.” (#3) “Just imagine you going to your car right now and you see a lady right there, and they just start laughing when you look at them. You hear something go: ‘They’re laughing at you. You know they’re laughing at you, right?’ To yourself you’ll be like: ‘No, I’m not hearing this. These people could be laughing about anything. They just happened to probably look this way, and they’re talking about something and happened to look this way.’” (#13)
Negative symptoms are defined as blunting of affect, poverty of speech and thought, apathy, anhedonia, reduced social drive, loss of motivation, lack of social interest and inattention to social or cognitive input. Negative symptoms may be more chronic and, in some ways, more devastating than positive symptoms; however, negative symptoms do not typically lead to hospitalization because, unlike positive symptoms, they usually do not negatively impact or otherwise impinge upon other people, and therefore do not bring the patient to the attention of legal or medical authorities (Tsuang, Glatt, & Faraone,
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The Measurement and Treatment Research to Improve Cognition in Schizophrenia project recently agreed on a working set of areas of functioning most affected, reviewed briefly here: working memory, attention/vigilance, verbal learning and memory, visual learning and memory, reasoning and problem solving, speed of processing and social cognition (Tomida, et al., 2010). These impairments affect individuals with Schizophrenia ability to gain and maintain employment, live independently, continue their education, and interfere with their personal

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