Does the Clinical Presentation of Schizophrenia Differ in Elders from Adults? A Cross Sectional StudyAuthor(s): Arash Mowla* and Zohre Zareizadeh
Introduction: As the population is aging, better understanding of the clinical presentation of schizophrenia in later life seems to be a clinical priority. Our aim is to study the clinical manifestations of schizophrenia in the older adult patients.
Methods: 102 schizophrenia patients met our inclusion criteria and entered the study. They were divided to two groups based on their age: group 1(18 years old to 64 years old) and group 2 (65 years old and older). There were 53 patients in group 1 and 49 patients in group 2. The patients were evaluated for schizophrenia pattern of presentation and clinical profile by Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). The two groups were compared according to their total score and subscale scores of PANSS.
Results: The mean age of the patients in group 1 (Age<65) was 35.5 ± 7.9 and in group 2 (age ≥ 65) was 72.1 ± 6.1. The total PANSS score and average positive subscale score were significantly lower in the older adult group. But the average negative subscale score and average general psychopathology subscale score did not differ significantly between the two groups.
Conclusion: Our study demonstrates that with aging, schizophrenia patients have improvements in positive symptoms especially disorganization, but negative and cognitive symptoms rates are similar in elderly and younger schizophrenia patients. Furthermore, we found that rate of depressive symptoms was higher in elders with schizophrenia.