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SCHIZ-O-PHRE-NI-A n Any of a group of psychotic reactions characterized by withdrawal from reality with highly variable affective behavioral and intellectual disturbances Long wwwmentalheathcom Schizophrenia is the word for a group of mental illnesses marked by a multitude of symptoms Literally the term means split mind but though many people think it schizophrenia is not multiple personalities It is generally thought of as the classic case of insanity When most people think of someone as being crazy they think of the hallucinations confusing speech and delusions of schizophrenics But not all schizophrenics suffer the same mental illness Attempts have been made to turn schizophrenia into several forms and groups Knowing one form of the illness from another would help the patients and help researchers understand the causes and learn what treatments work best in what forms But these efforts have been totally unsuccessful It is not known whether or not people suffer from mild undetectable forms of the disease There is no objective way to diagnose schizophrenia such as there are no chemicals in the blood the brain or the spinal fluid X-rays and examinations of cells do not show it either Psychiatrists rely on symptoms but many diseased may have similar symptoms The requirements for diagnosis are found in the third edition of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental disorders DSM III which is the official diagnostic system of the American psychiatric association At least one of the symptoms from the list of symptoms must be present for six months or more to be a schizophrenic symptom If a person does not meet DSM III criteria he or she is does not have schizophrenia In the late 1800s there were three different mental diseases for modern schizophrenia There was paranoia psychosis discovered in 1868 hebephrenia discovered in 1871 and catatonia discovered in 1874 Then in 1896 Emil kraepelin grouped them all together into one disease called dementia praecox which means early insanity to indicate
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