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Schizophrenia and Schizoaffective Disorders

These disorders fall in the spectrum of affective disorders. The main symptom is “psychosis” which means disrupted sense of reality. Clinical symptoms manifest with hallucinations, paranoia, disorganized thinking or behaviors, and erratic speech.


If the clinical case displays mainly psychotic symptoms, the diagnosis could be Brief Psychotic Disorder, Schizophreniform, or Schizophrenia, depending on the symptomatology timeframe.


Schizoaffective Disorder presents with a combination of psychosis and mood symptoms such as depression and/or mania.


Before diagnosing a Primary Psychotic Disorder, we need to review blood work and brain imaging if needed to rule out medical conditions that could have a psychotic presentation. Medications side effects are also another common source of psychosis. These conditions can be reversible in many occasions and early intervention improves prognosis.

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