This book challenges professional and public misconceptions of schizophrenia as an illness with intractable symptoms and inexorable mental deterioration, educating clinicians and researchers on the effectiveness of treatment to change the course of or prevent the onset of illness.
The authors illustrate such effectiveness through fifteen case studies examining psychosis in diverse clients. These case studies are divided into the three phases of the illness—prodromal/clinical high risk, first-episode, chronic, and treatment-refractory—with accompanying analyses of the causes, symptoms, interventions and treatments. By depicting patients at different clinical stages of the illness, with accompanying explanations of how they got to that point, what might have been done to avoid – or has been done to achieve – this outcome, the reader will gain an appreciation of the nature of the illness and for the therapeutic potential of currently available treatments.
Readers will learn about the various clinical aspects of schizophrenia and treatment including diagnosis, prognosis, clinical presentation, suicide risk, cognitive deficits, stigma, medication management, and psychosocial interventions.
Table of Contents
Part I: Onset (Early Identification and Prevention)
Chapter 1: "Using Psychotherapy and Medications to Treat a Teenager with Prodromal Symptoms"
Chapter 2: "Persecutory Delusions and the Transition from Clinical High-Risk to Syndromal Psychosis"
Chapter 3: "The Heritability of Schizophrenia and Dealing with Having a Family Member with Schizophrenia"
Chapter 4: "The First-Episode of Psychosis and Suicide in Schizophrenia"
Chapter 5: "The Many Clinical Phases of Early Psychosis and the Importance of Psychoeducation and Medication Management"
Part II: Recurrent and Chronic Illness (Once You Have It How Do You Manage It)
Chapter 6: "Drug-Induced and Other Acute Psychoses in an Emergency Room Setting"
Chapter 7: "Impaired Functioning and Downward Shift in Functioning in Schizophrenia"
Chapter 8: "Fixed-False Beliefs"
Chapter 9: "The Capgras Delusion"
Chapter 10: "Violence in Schizophrenia"
Chapter 11: "Auditory Hallucinations and Religious Delusions"
Chapter 12: "Negative Symptoms and Cognitive Deficits"
Part III: End-Stage (Dealing with Residual Symptoms and Treatment-Resistance)
Chapter 13: "Clozapine and Treatment-Refractory Illness"
Chapter 14: "Electroconvulsive Therapy in Schizophrenia"
Chapter 15: "Medical Conditions that can Masquerade as Schizophrenia"
Ragy Girgis, MD, MS, is an associate professor of Clinical Psychiatry at the Columbia University Department of Psychiatry and New York State Psychiatric Institute. He has published 80 peer-reviewed scientific papers has also recently authored On Satan, Demons, and Psychiatry: Exploring Mental Illness in the Bible, published in 2020.
Gary Brucato, PhD, is an associate research scientist in the Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York City. An expert on psychosis and violence, he has published nearly 40 peer-reviewed journal articles on these topics. This is his second book. He was also the author, with Dr. Michael H. Stone, of The New Evil: Understanding the Emergence of Modern Violent Crime, published in 2019.
Jeffrey A. Lieberman, MD, is the Lawrence C. Kolb Professor and Chairman of Psychiatry, Columbia University, Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, and the director of the New York State Psychiatric Institute. He has published hundreds of peer reviewed journal articles, including some of the most seminal articles in the field of schizophrenia. In addition, Dr. Lieberman has written or edited 11 books on mental illness, psychopharmacology, and psychiatry.
"Written by the pre-eminent leaders in the field of schizophrenia research with decades of clinical experience, this user-friendly book offers a cutting-edge, evidence-based compendium of all things psychosis – symptoms, treatment, diagnosis, and prognosis. Written for both the avid clinician and concerned family member, the authors seek to instill hope and discuss the effectiveness of treatment to change the course of this potentially devastating disease and, when possible, prevent the onset of illness altogether. A must-have for all psychiatrists!"
Anna Yusim, MD, Chief Psychiatrist, Upper East Side Psychiatry; lecturer, Yale University Department of Psychiatry; distinguished fellow, American Psychiatric Association; Author, Fulfilled
"The title of this wonderful book, 'Understanding and Caring for People with Schizophrenia: Fifteen Clinical Cases', does not begin to do justice to the breadth of topics and issues it covers. Besides focusing on the symptomatic presentation and treatment options (including medication, psychotherapy, and psychoeducation) for the prodromal, first-episode, and chronic stages of Schizophrenia, it expertly covers a wide range of other important topics, such as the heritability of Schizophrenia, violence and suicide, the impact of drug use, as well as sections focusing on important symptoms such as the various types of delusions (including exotic ones such as the Capgras delusion), hallucinations, negative symptoms and cognitive deficits. What makes the information contained in this book come alive is its reliance on interesting and compelling case material to illustrate the various topics, which should make this book especially appealing to students, clinicians-in-training, and patients and family members."
Michael First, MD, professor of Clinical Psychiatry, Columbia University
"Dr. Girgis and colleagues have produced a very useful addition to the literature on schizophrenia. The case history format makes the disease and its associated problems, come alive. The book will be especially useful for trainees in all mental health disciplines who wish to better understand this fascinating, if sometimes devastating, disease. The book is also accessible for individuals with schizophrenia and their families who wish to do a deeper dive into its details and to see that some cases are indeed treatable. Strongly recommended."
E. Fuller Torrey, MD, author, Surviving Schizophrenia and American Psychosis
"These internationally renowned mental health experts have written a remarkable book – one that is compelling to read, compassionate, and highly educational. Written without jargon, the text is easily understood by the general public while at the same time providing concise clinical pearls that will help experienced clinicians provide even better care of their patients. The approach of starting each chapter with a detailed case illustration – often in the patient's voice – followed by discussion is both absorbing and illuminating. Each case provides a resounding message of hope – that recent advances in mental health have done much to enhance the prognosis and lives of those with schizophrenia."
Brian A. Fallon, MD, MPH, professor of Clinical Psychiatry, director of the Center for Neuroinflammatory Disorders and Biobehavioral Medicine and director of the Lyme and Tick-Borne Diseases Research Center, Columbia University
"Written by leading researchers of schizophrenic spectrum disorders, using 15 case studies, Drs. Girgis, Brucato and Lieberman provide wisdom and illuminate the complexity and heterogeneity of schizophrenia. The rich and eloquently written case vignettes capture the human dimension of the illness while at the same time deepening one’s clinical understanding, and provide evidence as to the effectiveness of treatment at different phases of the illness. This scholarly book is a must read for clinicians, academicians, and anyone interested in schizophrenia."
Ali Khadivi, PhD, ABAP, professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Albert Einstein College of Medicine