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Screening Criteria for the Diagnosis of Schizophrenia in Deaf Patients

J. William Evans, MD; Holly Elliott, MS
Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1981;38(7):787-790. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1981.01780320067007.
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• Confusion about symptoms of schizophrenia in deaf patients leads to misdiagnosis or failure of diagnosis in some individuals. Consequently, we used Schneider's symptoms of schizophrenia, the International Pilot Study of Schizophrenia's list of discriminating symptoms of schizophrenia, and a symptom checklist from DSM-III to evaluate retrospectively 13 deaf adult schizophrenic patients in whom diagnoses were made using DSM-II. Fifteen signs and symptoms were identified in those schizophrenic patients; six symptoms (poor insight, lability of affect, poverty of content, poor rapport, vagueness, and inability to complete a course of action) are usual in nonpsychotic as well as psychotic deaf patients. The nine "primary" symptoms (loss of ego boundaries, delusional perception, restricted affect, illogicality, abnormal explanations, hallucinations, inappropriate affect, remoteness from reality, and ambivalence) are useful screening criteria in the diagnosis of schizophrenia in deaf patients.

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