Schizophrenia is a devastating mental illness characterized by symptoms eg hallucinations, disorganized thinking, loss of goal-directed behaviors and deterioration in social role functioning.
Positive or psychotic symptoms are delusions, hallucinations, and distorted perceptions.
Negative symptoms include flat or blunted emotions, lack of motivation or energy, lack of pleasure or interest in things, and limited speech.
Disorganized symptoms are confused thinking, disorganized speech and behavior.
Cognitive symptoms include impairment in attention verbal fluency memory, and executive functioning.

Schizophrenia Signs and Symptoms


  • Schizophrenia is a devastating mental illness characterized by symptoms eg hallucinations, disorganized thinking, loss of goal-directed behaviors and deterioration in social role functioning


  • It has approximately 0.3-0.7% lifetime prevalence but there are reported variation by race/ethnicity, across countries and by geographic origin
    • In a 2012 incidence review in England, there is a pooled incidence 15 per 100,000 person between 1950 and 2009 with rates varied according to age and gender
  • It has a lifetime risk of suicide of 7%
  • It is equally prevalent in men and women

Signs and Symptoms

Positive Symptoms

  • Delusions
  • Formal thought disorder
  • Distorted perceptions/perceptual disturbances

Negative Symptoms

  • Flat or blunted emotions
  • Lack of motivation or energy
  • Lack of pleasure or interest in things
  • Limited speech

Disorganized Symptoms

  • Confused thinking and disorganized speech
  • Disorganized behavior

Cognitive Symptoms

  • Impairment in verbal fluency, memory, executive functioning
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