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Nord J Psychiatry. 2006;60(2):114-20.

Insight in schizophrenia: a review.

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Psyciatric Department V, Frederiksborg General Hospital, Hørsholm, Denmark.


The issue of insight in schizophrenia must be assumed to be one of the most important aspects of the clinical examination. Comprehensive studies have shown that between 50% and 80% of all patients suffering from schizophrenia do not believe that they have a disorder. In recent years, poor insight in schizophrenia has been the subject of increasing interest, as manifested in a number of studies discussed in the present review. Some of these studies focus on insight correlated to various parameters such as psychopathology, neuropsychology, clinical relevance and compliance. Other studies refer to more theoretical implications, among these the issue of defining the concept of insight: whether insight can be seen as a "primary" phenomenon in schizophrenia, and whether insight may be graduated, dimensioned or increased. Several authors have developed rating scales in an attempt to obtain a measure for the degree or dimension of insight. Here, the range of parameters employed gives an excellent impression of the complexity of the concept of insight. In the concluding discussion, a phenomenological aspect is brought in, in an attempt to place the concept of insight in relation to disturbances of the self in schizophrenia and to primary symptoms in schizophrenia, amongst these autism.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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