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    Schizophrenia in Young Adults

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    When Does it Start and Who Gets It?

    Psychotic symptoms (such as hallucinations and delusions) usually emerge in men in their late teens and early 20s and in women in their mid-20s to early 30s. They seldom occur after age 45 and only rarely before puberty, although cases of schizophrenia in children as young as 5 have been reported. In adolescents, the first signs can include a change of friends, a drop in grades, sleep problems, and irritability. Because many normal adolescents exhibit these behaviors as well, a diagnosis can be difficult to make at this stage. In young people who go on to develop the disease, this is called the "prodromal" period.

    Research has shown that schizophrenia affects men and women equally and occurs at similar rates in all ethnic groups around the world.

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    Schizophrenia: When Do Symptoms Usually Start?

    Genes can play a role in schizophrenia, so some people are born with a higher-than-average chance of getting it. But it doesn't usually take hold until after puberty. Most people are diagnosed in their late teens to early 30s. Men and women are equally likely to get this brain disorder, but guys tend to get it slightly earlier. On average, they're diagnosed in their late teens to early 20s. Women tend to learn they have it in their late 20s to early 30s. Schizophrenia is rarely diagnosed before...

    Read the Schizophrenia: When Do Symptoms Usually Start? article > >

    WebMD Public Information from the U.S. National Institutes of Health

    Reviewed on July 12, 2006
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