This Is Schizophrenia, The Serious Mental Disorder Of The Man

This is schizophrenia, the serious mental disorder of the man who has sent a knife to Maroto

It is usually associated with violent behavior. The reality is that, with the right treatment, it can be controlled without problems.

The bloody razor received by Reyes Maroto (left).

Is about one of the most stigmatized mental illnesses that exists. The fact that its cause is not clear contributes to this: it is believed that the interaction between genetic and environmental conditions, from complications in childbirth to growing up in large cities, can lead to schizophrenia, which affects approximately one person in 100: it is the most common severe mental disorder.

In recent decades, this disease has come to the fore, perpetuating its stigmatization, due to sadly famous cases such as that of Noelia de Mingo, a doctor who fatally stabbed three people at the Jiménez Díaz Foundation, where she was doing her residency. Now, he does it again with the case of a man who has sent a letter with a bloody knife to the Minister of Industry, Reyes Maroto.

Pharmacological treatment and psychosocial support is vital for these people to have a quality of life comparable to that of the general population.

What is schizophrenia?

The well-known manual of the American Psychiatric Association, DSM-5, establishes that two or more of the following symptoms must be present to diagnose schizophrenia: delusions, hallucinations, disorganized speech, catatonic behavior (abnormal movements), affective flattening, or exaggerated demotivation. being unable to move.

The WHO characterizes this disease as a distortion of thought, perceptions, emotions, language, self-awareness and behavior, with hallucinations and delusions being frequent experiences in these patients, the famous inner ‘voices’ that are associated with schizophrenic patients.

Symptoms begin to manifest between the ages of 15 and 35 and often last a lifetime. According to the Spanish Society of Psychiatry, it tends to appear in families: one in ten children who has a parent with schizophrenia will develop it. However, heredity is not enough and triggering events are needed, such as stressful situations, family relationship difficulties, etc.

Is schizophrenia dangerous?

It is common to associate this disease with violent and dangerous, unpredictable people. Cases like that of Noelia de Mingo or the person who sent a bloody knife to Reyes Maroto make that stigma survive.

However, most people with schizophrenia are not prone to violence. Is occurs in patients who have a prior history of violence or those with alcohol or other substance abuse. Treated people are stable and do not behave aggressively.

The paradox is that there is part of these patients who, when stabilized, they can abandon the medication, which, in the case of those with paranoid and psychotic symptoms, may engage in violent behavior.

How is schizophrenia treated?

Schizophrenia is treated with a combination of antipsychotic drugs and psychosocial support. This disease is considered disabling and, according to the World Health Organization, people with schizophrenia are 2 to 2.5 times more likely to die at a young age than the bulk of the population. This is especially serious in low- and middle-income countries, where a large proportion of these patients are not treated.

If there is something that has been shown to not work, it is the “old-fashioned” psychiatric institutions, as the WHO calls them, and “violate their basic human rights”, forcing them to transfer care from these institutions to the community.

An example of the vulnerability of people with schizophrenia has been experienced during the pandemic. The Spanish Society of Psychiatry sent a letter to the Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, to request the inclusion of schizophrenic patients in the priority groups for vaccination because, according to a recent study, the diagnosis of schizophrenia was the greatest predictor of mortality among infected people.