Violence in schizophrenia: A study of 60 cases
Epidemiological studies suggest a positive but controversial correlation between the major mental disorders, particularly schizophrenia and delinquent or criminal acting out. aim : To study the occurrence of violence in patients with schizophrenia according to demographic, clinical and disease progression features.
This retrospective study included all out-patients, consulting during a period of one month, suffering from schizophrenia for at least five years. The clinical and forensic history was obtained owing to a semi-structured interview with patients and their families, medical records and the passing of different scales.
Sixty patients were included. 46.7% (n=28) of patients had a violent behavior in the pre morbid period. Aggressiveness was noted as the first prodrome in 13.3% (n=8) of cases. 28 major acts of violence were committed by 30% (n=18) of patients regardless of the active period of disease. In 13.3% (n=8) of cases, these acts announced the disease. The majority of acts have been committed against a non-foreign person. Recurrence was noted in 44.4% (n=8) of patients. Several risk factors of violent behavior were found. Only prodromal aggression was associated with a poor prognosis.
Violences committed by patients with schizophrenia are attributed to a particular group of patients and do not have necessarily a pejorative prognostic value.
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