The Lack of Insight in Schizophrenia

1653 WordsJun 23, 20187 Pages
The Lack of Insight in Schizophrenia In my lifetime, I have spent months with my Grandmother, Florence Ernstead, who is a diagnosed paranoid delusional schizophrenic. During this time I have realized that schizophrenics have difficulty realizing the seriousness of their disorders. This inability to acknowledge a problem is known by psychiatrists as lack of insight. Many psychotic patients, especially schizophrenics, display a lack of insight into their disorder (Keefe 9). Lack of insight refers to an unawareness of having a disorder, unawareness of having psychotic symptoms, and a refusal of treatment. Some scientists include other more specific aspects such as patients' views on cause of their disorder and/or symptoms,…show more content…
Lack of insight is definitely correlated with frontal lobe abnormalities as shown by studies of anosognosia and Alzheimer's disease. There is a possibility, then, that anosognosia and schizophrenia have a common cause for lack of insight (Ghaemi 786). There are other neurological impairments in schizophrenics. According to Husted, studies have shown that many patients with schizophrenia have small hippocampi, enlarged ventricles, and possibly communication damage between the hippocampus and cerebral cortex. Unfortunately, there is not enough evidence to for any of these abnormalities including frontal lobe dysfunction to be "necessary or sufficient for the diagnosis of schizophrenia" (37). Many scientists have found some association between frontal lobe dysfunction and schizophrenia, but just as many have also found no association. Dickerson, Boronow, Ringel, and Parente did comprehensive neuropsychological testing including "the Vocabulary, Arithmetic, Digit Span, Block Design, and Digit Span subtests of the patient, the Logical Memory test of the Wechsler Memory Scale, the Rey-Osterreith Complex Figure Test, the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, the Trail Making Test, the Halstead-Wepman Aphasia Screening Test, and the
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