Aetiologies of Schizophrenia

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What is the first physiological explanation of Schizophrenia?
It is linked to brain chemistry and and the structure of the brain
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What do Schizophrenics tend to have a high level of?
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Caused by?
high number of D2 receptors
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What do these receptors cause?
dopamine levels to increase so messages from neurons that transmit dopamine levels to increase
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Therefore what?
messages from neurons that transmit dopamine fire too easily
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What does this frequent firing lead to?
psychotic symptoms such as delusions and hallucinations associated with S
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What recent research supports this?
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What does Cannabis do?
binds to receptors and stimulates dopamine causing psychotic symptoms
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What would happen if nobody smoked cannabis?
13% fewer people would develop schizophrenia
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What is a second physiological explanation of S suggests?
the disorder is inherited through genes
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What genes are included?
DISC1 and G72
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S runs in what?
families and is more common in the close relatives of schizophrenic than it is in families with no schizophrenic
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What is the concordance rate in the general population?
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What do studies show?
the rate is much higher in twins, suggesting a genetic aetiology
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What would happen if S was entirely genetic?
the concordance rate for MZ twins would be 100%
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What is it actually?
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What does this suggest?
a strong genetic aetiology as the rate for DZ twin is only 17%
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What do Adoption studies such as what? show?
adopted children are more likely to develop S if their biological mothers have S compared to a control group of adoptees, Tienari
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Where does supporting evidence come from?
Kety' study
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What did he select?
66 Danish adoptees
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How many had S?
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What did the other 33 not have?
S (control group)
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After studying all their relatives what did he find?
14% of the biological relatives of the adoptees with S, also had S
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What else did he find?
less than 3% of their adopted relatives had S
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What does this suggest?
there is a strong genetic aetiology in S
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In methodological terms what is the physiological explanation ?
applauded because the twin and adoption research on which it is based
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What is it based on?
objective, scientific and thus reliable
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For example?
the use of control groups of people without S
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In adoption studies, what can be made?
comparisons and predictions to be made
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However why might critics question details of the research?
in adoption studies above were all the pps adopted at birth, or were some adopted later in life
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What is a weakness of the physiological explanation is it can be seen as?
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What does this mean?
Schizophrenia as shaped and controlled by forces such as genes and brain structur over which the individual has no cotnrol.
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What does this suggest?
aetiology of S is very pessimistic as nothing can be done to alter one's genes
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However what can be effective in lowering dopamine levels?
CLozapine are effective in lowering dopamine levels
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What psychiological explanation rejects?
these ideas based on nature and instead favours the idea that nurture causes S
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What is the first one psychiological explanation?
based on the cognitive approach
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What does this explain?
S in terms of faulty information processing
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What happens when at first a person develops S?
when they first hear voices, they may turn to others for confirmation of their experiences
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Then what happens?
when these experiences are not confirmed by others, the person may start to believe others are hiding the truth, so they start to become delusional and paranoid
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In addition?
people with S display disorganized thinking and speech, word salad
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What is another idea about S?
it is the product of dysfunction families
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Who suggested what?
Bateson suggested that children who later develop S are put in double blinds
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What does this mean?
they are given conflicting messages by their parents
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What families do these children come from?
families that tend to be hostile and critical
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hat can these messages lead to?
insecure sense of self which can later develop S
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What does a recent study show?
half of S were bused as children mostly sexually
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What do Schizophrenics tend to have a high level of?



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Caused by?


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What do these receptors cause?


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Therefore what?


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