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Schizophr Res. 1996 Jul;21(1):1-12.

Schizophrenia throughout life: sex differences in severity and profile of symptoms.

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1
Department of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia 19104, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The impact of aging and of gender has been examined in health and disease, but has received limited attention in schizophrenia. A lifespan perspective of gender differences can contribute to an understanding of clinical features and their underlying neurobiological processes.

METHOD:

A prospective sample of 272 patients with schizophrenia, divided into four age groups: < 35, 35-65, 65-80 and > 85, was assessed with standardized procedures to measure the composition and severity of symptoms.

RESULTS:

Aging was associated with increased severity of symptoms and gender differences were noted. Negative symptoms increased in severity, while some positive symptoms ameliorated with aging. Women were characterized by reduced negative symptoms, and this remained evident until the eighth decade.

CONCLUSIONS:

Aging and gender moderate the clinical features of schizophrenia in specific symptom clusters. These effects may give insight into neurobiological substrates of the illness.

PMID:
8864248
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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