Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia

Synopsis

Edited by the president of the World Federation of Societies of Biological Psychiatry and featuring an international list of world-renown contributors, Schizophrenia, Second Editionprovides psychiatrists, neurologists, and psychologists with a comprehensive handbook on the latest schizophrenia research and management from diagnosis through treatment.

New features in this user-friendly Second Edition:

  • Two-thirds new content, including 20 chapter additions
  • detailed coverage of interviewing, symptomatology evaluation, and cognitive assessment strategies to ensure accurate differential diagnosis
  • An in-depth discussion of both pharmacological and nonpharmacological treatment options
  • A section on the neurobiology of schizophrenia, covering the latest in genetic and epigenetic factors, brain abnormalities, neuroimaging, biochemical alterations, and social cognition
  • Treatment options for management of the disease, including treatment of the first schizophrenic episode, pharmacogenetic approaches, comparative efficacy of older vs. new antipsychotic medication, managing side-effects, psychosocial and cognitive rehabilitation, psychotherapy, and rehabilitation strategies

Excerpt

Schizophrenia, as a disease, and as a field of study, is shrouded with a large number of misunderstandings. However, patients and their relatives suffering from the disease have only one aim: to cure the disease as fast and efficient as possible. In general, patients with schizophrenia are overwhelmed by the complexity of the problems emerging with the disease, so are their relatives and caregivers. As the knowledge of the diagnosis, neurobiology, and pharmacological treatment strategies has expanded over the past years, we aim to summarize the current knowledge in this handbook.

The current edition covers the biopsychosocial approaches and current challenges of this disease. The chapters written by leading experts from all over the world cover diagnosis and psychopathology, neurobiology, pharmacological treatment strategies, nonpharmacological treatment, as well as the role of schizophrenia in the society.

Schizophrenia is a disease of the brain, and it is worthwhile to emphasize that it is a real (physical) disease like diabetes, epilepsy, or high blood pressure. However, in the medical community, schizophrenia is sometimes not viewed with the same methodological rigor like the latter diseases. In contrast to diabetes, epilepsy, or high blood pressure, there is less tolerance and understanding in the society when someone suffers from schizophrenia. Community studies revealed that a number of people think that schizophrenia is not a real disease and that it is more related to an irritable personality as a result of a trauma in early life or the result of an unfavorable social environment. However, intensive research in the field of neurobiology, including genetic and epigenetic factors, as well as brain abnormalities and biochemical alterations, provides us a different understanding, which will be dealt with in this handbook as well.

Since the first edition, pharmacological treatment strategies have expanded, and now, a number of more refined treatment strategies are available for both acute and long-term treatment of schizophrenia, including first episodes. The nonpharmacological treatment includes psychosocial and cognitive rehabilitation as well as specific psychotherapeutic approaches and aspects that need to be considered in transcultural psychiatry. How to overcome stigma as well as the role of violence and forensic issues in schizophrenia are discussed together with patient rights and ethical issues.

The chapters aim to reach an audience comprising of physicians and basic scientists in various psychiatric specialties as well as doctors of neurology and aim to be of importance in public health considerations. The book should also be of interest to policy makers who seek a comprehensive and current spectrum as well as treatment implications of this disorder. We sincerely believe our volume will prove to be attractive not only to individual practitioners but also to libraries/repositories of schizophrenia-related research knowledge around the world.

Siegfried Kasper and George N Papadimitriou

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