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PSY 320 Abnormal Critique 10




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Abnormal Critique 1
Abnormal Critique 10
A prodromal, often known as the subclinical signs and symptoms that precedes the onset
of psychosis, in schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders can be characterized according to
Larson, Walker, and Compton, as “a process of changes or deterioration in heterogeneous
subjective and behavioral symptoms that precede the onset of clinical psychotic symptoms.
The many basic symptoms of schizophrenia include impaired bodily sensations,
impaired tolerance to stress, disorders of emotion, thought, energy, concentration, and memory,
and impaired social functioning. When schizophrenia and
substance abuse are intertwined, it can be associated with longer durations of illness,
hospitalizations, and poorer social functioning and recovering.
In regards to treatment, antipsychotic medicine is the standard drug used to care for the
person diagnosed with schizophrenia. Dopamine receptors are regulated by the antagonist
produced by the antipsychotic medication. It is thought that the symptoms can be regulated
the antagonists because the symptoms are thought to be caused by dysregulated dopaminergic
transmission. Trial patients were used and it is indicated that attention and executive
was improved with the use of antipsychotic medication. “Over
the 12 week treatment, olanzapine-treated patients showed no gray matter changes while
haloperidol-treated patients showed significant decreases in gray matter volume.”
Naturalistic studies have been conducted and have experimented with antidepressants. 48
prodromal patients were examined and 20 of those patients received an antidepressant
medication and none of them converted to a psychotic disorder throughout the following two
years . The patients who were treated with antipsychotics only
42.9% or 12 of the patients developed a psychosis. The antidepressants were found to be a start

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Abnormal Critique 2
to treatment in prodromal adolescents that would be beneficial.
In a separate study, 35 participants were prescribed antipsychotics and ten of them went
on to develop psychosis. In a third study, 191 patients who were prescribed antipsychotics
“evidenced higher baseline-attenuated positive symptom scores but a greater decline in positive
and disorganized symptom severity at 6-month follow-up when compared with those who did
receive antipsychotic medication. Those prescribed antidepressants (42%) did not evidence a
significant decline in symptom severity .”
All of the studies together show that antidepressants are more commonly prescribed to
patients who are experiencing lesser amounts of psychotic episodes and symptoms and can
lessen the likelihood of psychotic episodes in the future.

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Abnormal Critique 3
Larson, M., Walker, E., Compton, M.,. Early signs, diagnosis, and therapeutics of the
prodromal phase of schizophrenia and related psychotic disorders. Expert Reviews, 10(8),
p. 1347-1359.

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