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2) Classification of Schizophrenia

The DSM-IV is the 4th version of the ‘Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders’. It contains a list of mental health disorders, for example, Dementia, Asperger’s Disorder and Autism. From the DSM-IV a professional will aim to give a reliable and valid diagnosis of whether a patient is mentally ill, and if so, what are they suffering from?

According to the DSM-IV, In order for a person to be diagnosed as schizophrenic their symptoms must significantly reduce their ability in reality tests, and these symptoms but be present for six months.

The DSM-IV describes six different types of schizophrenia:

  1. “Paranoid schizophrenia – the patient suffers from delusions of persecution or grandeur =. Sufferers are not incoherent and do not display inappropriate emotion, but they are extremely formal and quite intense.”
  2. “Disorganised schizophrenia – marked indifference insensitivity to social surroundings. Characterised by silliness, incoherence, often disregard of personal hygiene.”
  3. “Catatonic schizophrenia – the individual is very energetic or agitated.
  4. “Undifferentiated schizophrenia – dustbin category, no consistent pattern of behaviour, not classified by other categories.”
  5. “Residual schizophrenia – absence of obvious symptoms, but individual displays odd behaviour, e.g. odd, magical, bizarre thinking, marked social isolation or withdrawal.”

The ICD-10 is a European version of the DCM-IV, except this is used for all illness, not just mental. Some psychologists argue that this is a weakness as it can’t specialise on mental illness as closely as the DSM-IV


About Sam Cook

A blog set up to help A Level students revise Sociology


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