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Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia

Description

Schizophrenia, literally meaning "split mind," is a lifelong illness with recurrent acute attacks. Schizophrenia is characterized by a disorganization of normal thoughts and feelings.

The major types of schizophrenia are: simple, catatonic, hebephrenic, paranoid, schizo-affective, borderline, and pseudoneurotic.

Symptoms of schizophrenia usually develop in adolescence or early adulthood, although they may appear at other ages. Men and women are equally affected in all age groups. It is estimated that 1% of all populations are affected by the disorder and 0.1% of those affected, are treated.

A person with schizophrenia should see a doctor. A friend or family member should remain with the schizophrenic as much as possible until the individual sees a professional.

Treatments for schizophrenia include: prevention, pharmacological therapy, psychotherapy, intense psychotherapy, group psychotherapy and electroconvulsive therapy. Insulin coma therapy is no longer popular; it has been superseded by the use of phenothiazine drugs.

Causes

The exact cause of schizophrenia is unknown; it is suspected personal factors, and slight brain variations in the amount and types of chemicals may be the cause, as stated in the dopamine hypothesis.

Other possibilities
Malfunctioning of brain neurons, triggering mechanism by extreme mental stress such as: emotional upheaval, and hereditary predisposition; studies using monozygous twins showed the incidence of schizophrenia was six times greater for an unaffected twin than average, if the other twin has the condition; studies using siblings of schizophrenics showed the sibling's chance of contracting schizophrenia was 15% greater than siblings of normal parents.

Signs & Symptoms

Poor personal hygiene
Bizarre or inappropriate behavior
Loneliness
Mild depression
Personality loss
Narrowed attention
Illogical organization of thoughts and ideas
Perceptual disorders
Impulsive actions
Ambivalence
Aneurgia
Gradual or occasional withdrawal from day-to-day activities, work and interpersonal relationships
Vague speech, disconnected remarks, or what is known as "word salad," sentences of primarily nouns and verbs
Blank expression followed by sudden statements which spring into a person's mind

Statements about:
Others hearing or stealing their thoughts
Hearing of hostile voices
Exaggerated feelings of happiness
Exaggerated feelings of bewilderment
Exaggerated feelings of despair

Hallucinations of:
Odd physical sensations
Being given poison
Being attacked by others

Imagined loss of body control, sometimes as though someone else had taken over
Laughing during sad moments
Crying without cause
Expression of stoicism such that emotional contact is extremely difficult to impossible
Constant suspicion and resentment, accompanied by fear that people are plotting to destroy or harm them (paranoid schizophrenic)

Nutritional Supplements

Structure & Function:
        Essential Fatty Acids
        Nutrients for Brain Support &
        Amino Acids


---------------------------------
General Supplements
---------------------------------

AdultChild/Adolescent
Choline2000 - 10000 mg n/a
EPO*
Niacin 100 - 3000 mg n/a
Phenylalanine 500 - 1000 mg n/a
Vitamin B-6 25 - 30 mg n/a
Vitamin C1000 - 6000 mg n/a



* Please refer to the respective topic for specific nutrient amounts.

Note: All amounts are in addition to those supplements having a Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA). Due to individual needs, one must always be aware of a possible undetermined effect when taking nutritional supplements. If any disturbances from the use of a particular supplement should occur, stop its use immediately and seek the care of a qualified health care professional.

Dietary Considerations

Nutritional management of Schizophrenia has met with some success. Megadoses of niacin have proved effective in some cases of schizophrenia. Some schizophrenics improve when placed on a Lactose Restricted Diet and Gluten Restricted Diet. Relapses occur when individuals are exposed to wheat gluten.

Homeopathic Remedy

Long term treatment

1.* Lachesis mutus tinct.         - 15C
2. Muriatic acid                 - 15C
3.* Arnica montana tinct.         - 15C
4.** Baptisia tinct.                 - 30X
5. Baryta carbonica         - 15C

Treatment Schedule

Doses cited are to be administered on a 3X daily schedule, unless otherwise indicated. Dose usually continued for 2 weeks. Liquid preparations usually use 8-10 drops per dose. Solid preps are usually 3 pellets per dose. Children use 1/2 dose.

Legend

X = 1 to 10 dilution - weak (triturition)
C = 1 to 100 dilution - weak (potency)
M = 1 to 1 million dilution (very strong)
X or C underlined means it is most useful potency
Asterisk (*) = Primary remedy. Means most necessary remedy. There may be more than one remedy - if so, use all of them.

References

Boericke, D.E., 1988. Homeopathic Materia Medica.

Coulter, C.R., 1986. Portraits of Homeopathic Medicines.

Kent, J.T., 1989. Repertory of the Homeopathic Materia Medica.

Koehler, G., 1989. Handbook of Homeopathy.

Shingale, J.N., 1992. Bedside Prescriber.

Smith, Trevor, 1989. Homeopathic Medicine.

Ullman, Dana, 1991. The One Minute (or so) Healer.

Herbal Approaches

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Herbs
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Ginkgo biloba
St. John's wort

Note: The misdirected use of an herb can produce severely adverse effects, especially in combination with prescription drugs. This Herbal information is for educational purposes and is not intended as a replacement for medical advice.

Discussion:

Ginkgo biloba assists cerebral circulation.

St. John's wort is noted as an herbal tranquilizer.

The pharmaceutical, reserpine, an alkaloid, which has tranquilizing properties, derives from Rauwolfia serpentina.

Aromatherapy - Essential Oils

Valerian Essence

Related Health Conditions

Depression
Mental disorders

Abstracts

References

Anonymous: Schizophrenia and the Gut, Again, The Lancet, November 6, 1993;342:1128-1129.

Awad AG et al., A conceptual model of quality of life in schizophrenia: description and preliminary clinical validation. Qual Life Res, 1997 Jan, 6:1, 21-6.

Bland, Jeffrey. Medical Applications of Clinical Nutrition. Keats, 1983.

Brown AS et al., Neurobiological plausibility of prenatal nutritional deprivation as a risk factor for schizophrenia. J Nerv Ment Dis, 1996 Feb, 184:2, 71-85.

Dickerson, J.W.T. 1978. Nutrition and disorders of the nervous system. Nutrition in The Clinical Management of Disease. J.W.T. Dickerson and H.A. Lee, eds. Edward Arnold, London.

Dohan, F. C., J. C. Grasberger, F. M. Lowell, H. T. Johnson, and A.W. Arbegast. 1969. Relapsed schizophrenics: more rapid movement on a milk-and-cereal-free diet. British Journal of Psychiatry, 115.

Franzek E & Beckmann H: Gene-environment interaction in schizophrenia: season-of-birth effect reveals etiologically different subgroups. Psychopathology, 1996, 29:1, 14-26.

Hoek HW ett al., Schizoid personality disorder after prenatal exposure to famine. Am J Psychiatry, 1996 Dec, 153:12, 1637-9.

Kanofsky, J.D., et al: Abnormally High Vitamin B12 Levels in Some Elderly Schizophrenics. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 1993;12(5):616/Abstract 127.

Kirkcaldie MT et al., Transcranial magnetic stimulation as therapy for depression and other disorders. Aust N Z J Psychiatry, 1997 Apr, 31:2, 264-72.

Kolb, E. Recent Knowledge Concerning the Biochemistry and Significance of Ascorbic Acid. Z. Gesamte Inn Med., 39. 1984.

Kunz, J.R.M. 1982. The American Medical Association Family Medical Guide. Random House Pub, New York. 832 pp.

Majumdar, S.K. & P.P. Kahad. 1981. Serum vitamin B-12 status in chronic schizophrenic patients. Journal of Human Nutrition, vol 35.

Ovesen, L. Vitamin Therapy in the Absence of Obvious Deficiency. Drugs, 27 1984.

Petersdorf, R.G. & R.D. Adams. 1983. Harrison's Principles Of Internal Medicine. 10th ed. McGraw Hill Pub Co., New York. 2212 pp.

Petri, W.M., T.A. Ban & J.V. Anath. 1981. The use of nicotinic acid and pyridoxine in the treatment of schizophrenia. International Pharmacopsychiatry, vol. 16.

Ramchand, C.N. et al: RBC and Serum Folate Concentrations in Neuroleptic-Treated and Neuroleptic-Free Schizophrenic Patients. Journal of Nutritional Medicine, 1992;3:303-309.

Robinson, C.H. & M.R.Lawler. 1982. Normal and Therapeutic Nutrition. 16th ed. MacMillan Publishing Company, Inc., New York. 849 pp.

Rudin, D.O. 1981. The major psychoses and neuroses as omega-3 essential fatty acid deficiency syndrome: substrate pellagra. Biological Psychiatry, vol. 16.

Schorah, C.J., D.B. Morgan, & R.P. Hullin. 1983. Plasma vitamin C concentrations in patients in a psychiatric hospital. Human Nutrition Clinical Nutrition, vol. 37.

Singer, D.L. Twenty-Four Hour Monitoring Fails to Find Cardiac Arrhythmias in Patients on a Psmf. Obesity And Metabolism, 1. 1981.

Subak-Sharpe, G.J. 1984. The Physician's Manual For Patients. Times Books Pub, New York. 607 pp.

Wright, P. & Murray, R. M.: Schizophrenia: Prenatal Influenza and Autoimmunity. Annals of Medicine, 1993;25:497-502.

 


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