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Acta Psychiatr Scand. 2004 Aug;110(2):92-7.

Schizophrenia, neighbourhood, and crime.

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Department of General and Forensic Psychiatry, Lund University, Lund, Sweden.



To investigate the relationship between the prevalence of schizophrenia and measures of social deprivation in varying areas in the city of Malmö.


A case-finding study of schizophrenia was combined with a victimization survey. Data was factor-analysed and visualized using geographical information system software.


The schizophrenic patients lived predominantly in socially disorganized areas characterized by high levels of disorder, fear of crime and victimization. The local prevalence of schizophrenia covaried significantly with all indices of social disorganization. In addition, a significant but weak association was obtained between prevalence of schizophrenia and fear of specific persons in the neighbourhood.


In spite of enormous changes in social conditions, psychiatric knowledge and organization of treatment, and political ambitions, schizophrenic patients still aggregate in socially deprived areas. This segregation may result in worsening of the illness as well as increasing the social disorganization in the local domicile.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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