Schizoaffective Disorder

Overview

Main Concepts:

Notable Features:

  • Mood episodes are prominent and recur throughout the illness (unlike schizophrenia)

High Yield:

  • Assess the longitudinal course of the illness to see if there are at least 2 weeks of psychotic symptoms in the absence of a mood episode

Other:

Definition

  • Major depressive or manic episode concurrent with symptoms of schizophrenia

  • Lifetime history of delusions/hallucinations for >= 2 weeks in the absence of a major depressive or manic episode

  • Mood episodes are prominent and recur throughout the illness

  • Not due to substances or another medical condition

Diagnostics


Assessment

Schizoaffective disorder can be differentiated from schizophrenia and bipolar disorder by assessing the relationship of mood and psychotic symptoms over the course of the illness. Mood symptoms in schizophrenia are present for relatively brief periods of time. In bipolar I, psychotic symptoms occur exclusively during manic or depressive episodes.

Ask:

  • Is the patient's mood stable?

  • Are there psychotic symptoms happening?

Management