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Indian J Psychol Med. 2012 Jan;34(1):12-20. doi: 10.4103/0253-7176.96149.

Expressed emotion in schizophrenia: an overview.

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1
Department of Psychiatry, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bangalore, Karnataka, India.

Abstract

The expressed emotion (EE) is considered to be an adverse family environment, which includes the quality of interaction patterns and nature of family relationships among the family caregivers and patients of schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders. Influence of EE has been found to be one of the robust predictors of relapse in schizophrenia. This review article aims to provide a brief description of the origins and evolution of the EE as a construct from the available literature. The EE is modulated by multiple factors-some of which include certain personality profile, attribution factors by caregivers toward patient symptoms, and patient's vulnerability to stress. The psychosocial assessment and interventions specifically focused on family psychoeducation can potentially reduce high EE and relapse of symptoms as well. However, the theory surrounded with EE undermines the caregiver's positive attitudes toward the patients. Hence, it is important that the future studies should focus on both protective and vulnerable factors within the construct of EE in schizophrenia to facilitate comprehensive care.

KEYWORDS:

Caregivers; expressed emotion; schizophrenia

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