Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Public Health

pp 1169-1171

Psychotic Disorders

  • Uwe RuhlAffiliated withInstitut für Psychologie, Universität Göttingen


Dementia praecox; Auditory hallucinations; Thought disturbances; Distorted thinking; Psychosis


Schizophrenia, schizotypal disorder, and persistent delusional disorders are classified, according to ICD-10, as schizophrenic or psychotic disorders. The psychotic disorders are characterized in general by fundamental and characteristic distortions of thinking and perception, and affects that are inappropriate or blunted. Clear consciousness and intellectual capacity are usually maintained although certain cognitive deficits may evolve over the course of time. The most important psychopathological phenomena include “positive symptoms”, for example, thought insertion or withdrawal; delusional perception and delusions of control; influence or passivity; hearing internal, hallucinatory voices commenting or discussing the patient in the third person; assigning unusual significance or meaning to normal events or holding fixed false personal ...

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