Schizotypal personality disorder, or simply schizotypal disorder, is a personality disorder that is characterized by a need for social isolation, odd behaviour and thinking, and often unconventional beliefs such as being convinced of having extra sensory abilities. Some people believe that schizotypal personality disorder is a mild form of schizophrenia.
Diagnostic criteria (DSM-IV-TR)
The DSM-IV-TR, a widely used manual for diagnosing mental disorders (see also:DSM cautionary statement), defines schizotypal personality disorder as:
A. A pervasive pattern of social and interpersonal deficits marked by acute discomfort with, and reduced capacity for, close relationships as well as by cognitive or perceptual distortions and eccentricities of behavior, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following:
- ideas of reference (excluding delusions of reference)
- odd beliefs or magical thinking that influences behavior and is inconsistent with subcultural norms (e.g., superstitiousness, belief in clairvoyance, telepathy, or "sixth sense"; in children and adolescents,
- bizarre fantasies or preoccupations)
- unusual perceptual experiences, including bodily illusions
- odd thinking and speech (e.g., vague, circumstantial, metaphorical, overelaborate, or stereotyped)
- suspiciousness or paranoid ideation
- inappropriate or constricted affect
- behavior or appearance that is odd, eccentric, or peculiar
- lack of close friends or confidants other than first-degree relatives
- excessive social anxiety that does not diminish with familiarity and tends to be associated with paranoid fears rather than negative judgments about self
B. Does not occur exclusively during the course of Schizophrenia, a Mood Disorder With Psychotic Features, another Psychotic Disorder, or a Pervasive Developmental Disorder.
Diagnostic criteria (ICD-10)
Chapter V of the tenth revision to the International Statistical Classification of Diseases is another way of diagnosing mental and behavioral health disorders:
Schizotypal disorder is a disorder characterized by eccentric behaviour and anomalies of thinking and affect which resemble those seen in schizophrenia, though no definite and characteristic schizophrenic anomalies have occurred at any stage. There is no dominant or typical disturbance, but any of the following may be present:
- inappropriate or constricted affect (the individual appears cold and aloof);
- behaviour or appearance that is odd, eccentric, or peculiar;
- poor rapport with others and a tendency to social withdrawal;
- odd beliefs or magical thinking, influencing behaviour and inconsistent with subcultural norms;
- suspiciousness or paranoid ideas;
- obsessive ruminations without inner resistance, often with dysmorphophobic, sexual or aggressive contents;
- unusual perceptual experiences including somatosensory (bodily) or other illusions, depersonalization or derealization;
- vague, circumstantial, metaphorical, overelaborate, or stereotyped thinking, manifested by odd speech or in other ways, without gross incoherence;
- occasional transient quasi-psychotic episodes with intense illusions, auditory or other hallucinations, and delusion-like ideas, usually occurring without external provocation.
The disorder runs a chronic course with fluctuations of intensity. Occasionally it evolves into overt schizophrenia. There is no definite onset and its evolution and course are usually those of a personality disorder. It is more common in individuals related to schizophrenics and is believed to be part of the genetic "spectrum" of schizophrenia.
This diagnostic rubric is not recommended for general use because it is not clearly demarcated either from simple schizophrenia or from schizoid or paranoid personality disorders. If the term is used, three or four of the typical features listed above should have been present, continuously or episodically, for at least 2 years. The individual must never have met criteria for schizophrenia itself. A history of schizophrenia in a first-degree relative gives additional weight to the diagnosis but is not a prerequisite.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Schizotypal Personality Disorder".