Patients with schizophrenia valued self empowerment, understanding how self related to illness, and coping with relapse
QUESTION: How do patients with schizophrenia experience their sense of self in relation to their illness?
Psychiatric centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
15 outpatients between 21 and 47 years of age (mean age 30 y, 87% men) with schizophrenia (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders III, revised criteria) and ≥1 of delusions, hallucinations, bizarre behaviour, or severe thought disorder. Patients were grouped by duration of illness: having recovered from their first psychotic episode that occurred within the previous 2 years (first episode), having had between 2 and 10 years since their first psychotic episode and >1 psychotic episode since the first episode (2–10 y group), and having had >10 years since their first psychotic episode and >1 psychotic episode since the first episode (>10 y group).
Patients participated in a semistructured life history interview. Interviews lasted ≤2 hours and …