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Tijdschrift voor Psychiatrie 35 (1993) 10

New research

Primary prevention of schizophrenia: concept formation

F. de Groot, L. D'Halleweyn

Despite all attention that goes to prevention, primary prevention is relatively neglected, certainly when it concerns schizophrenia. Even though research on high-risk populations shows there often are small but clear premorbid distortions. Typically found distortions concern cognitive functions, specifically the controlled information processing is disturbed, and personality characteristics: schizotypal traits, thought disorder and low social competence are mentioned.

On the other hand significant differences are found between the birth seasons of schizophrenics and non-schizophrenics: relatively more schizophrenics are born in winter and spring.

These data may lead us to a primary prevention policy. The authors hold a plea for a preventive research program, in which children of schizophrenics are systematically treated in a non-stigmatizing way. Cooperation between different instances is indispensable.

One can have a lot of remarks on this paper. This is exactly the first intention: to stimulate discussion.