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Report Example: Visual Disorders in Schizophrenia

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George Washington University
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They are multiple and include anomalies in the perception of shape, color, directional brilliance, texture gradients, hue, depth and contrast of objects, as well as anomalies in the perception of the movement of objects. People with schizophrenia - apart from abnormalities in the electro-oculogram - exhibit anomalies in the electroretinogram and the repetitive visual potentials. Individuals with schizophrenia do not copy visual rhythm just like normal ones and that the lack of resonance or cortical synchronization at least in the beta and gamma frequencies results in an adaptive cognitive deficiency, which we could well designate as "psycho- universal community "or" common sense." This adaptive function of "top-down" mode (top-down) serves to synthesize and modulate the significant individual reality within the social context.


Perception is a highly articulated cognitive faculty that acts by integrating with sensations, produced by the sense organs, based on the acquired experience. It is a receptive and constructive psychic activity that allows you to collect all the data from the surrounding world based on the experience you are experiencing and the context in which you are involved. The perceptive function acts through a process of storing stimuli, which are selected and processed by the central and peripheral nervous system (Brda & Tang, 2011). In fact, when we look in the eyes of a person we observe its inner world; the eyes are the mirror of the soul. This is because of the pupils, innervated by the optic nerve, and is the only spaces that let our interior ness leap, creating a conductive thread with the outside world. The eyes act as "exo-detectors," which translate data from the outside world, sensory information and physical-chemical changes received through the stimulation and activation of the optic nerve, which in turn activates the neuro cortical areas 'secondary processing of perceived stimuli.

Therefore, perception is closely related to many cognitive functions, such as memory, attention, mental representations, emotion, etc. Perceptions have the following peculiarities:

are concrete and objective;

are well defined and circumscribed;

They are involuntary;

are passive;

are placed in precise spatial-temporal areas to allow for a proper examination of reality.

The feeling is the first step in the perceptual process. Sensations use sense organs that allow: to detect external stimuli, they are placed in space-time parameters are interpreted, and with the formation of perceptions, the relevant inputs are preserved, and the irrelevant ones are removed. Perception is the function through which man obtains information from the surrounding environment, through the organs of meaning assigned to it. (Sight, hearing, smell, feel and taste) (Butler et al. 2012). Disturbances of perception are of different type, and different psychopathological significance: quantitative and qualitative disorders distinguish them.

The perceptual alteration can, in fact, affect the quantity of the same or the quality. Particular emotional states such as anxiety or some psychiatric disorders can cause quantitative disturbances. For example, a depressed timing patient may report a reduced color perception, or taste of food, as well as a normal subject, anxiety, can perceive noisy rumors, such as a squabble, amplified. It is, in fact, hyper- or hypoesthesia. These examples highlight the importance of emotional participation in the perceptual phenomenon. In some situations, conversely, a "strangeness" may occur from the world of perceptions. The subject refers to perceiving "through a filter, a veil."

Diffuse neurocognitive deficits, such as memory and operational problems executive, are characteristic of the schizophrenic psychosis. Although we often admitted that the early stages of visual processing are relatively intact in schizophrenic patients, deficits are frequently reported at the level of the organization of perception and discrimination (Chen, 2011). It is possible that these anomalies at the level of visual perception processes contribute to the disorders observed in cognitive processes of a higher order. It is when it is wise to evaluate the integrity of early stages visual treatment in schizophrenic patients.

Justification of the Study

Schizophrenia scares the general public and tarnishes scientists. As a prototype of madness, his study is attracting the joint attention of neuroscience, cognitive science, and clinical practice. During the night of 17 to 18 December 2004, 21-year-old Romain Dupuy stabbed a nurse and a nurse at the psychiatric hospital in Pau. A few months later, a patient seriously injured an employee of a medical-psychological center in Saint-Maur-des-Fosses. The patients both had schizophrenia. Would madness make it violent? Psychiatrists disagree with this idea: psychotic patients, in this case schizophrenic, are not violent by nature. The very high rate of suicide that accompanies the disease proves that they are more dangerous for themselves than for others. This incident reminds us how schizophrenia remains mysterious to the general public and researchers.

Schizophrenia is considered the most frequent chronic psychosis, of which it would be the prototype. According to psychiatrist Nicolas Georgieff, the term "psychosis" in psychiatry refers to "a type of mental pathology, characterized by a serious disorder of the relationship with reality, disorders of identity or self-awareness, disorders of intersubjective relations (hence of communication) and specific disturbances of mental activity, in particular delirium and hallucinations (1) "

The diagnosis of the disease, often difficult, is based on the clinic, that is, the recognition of symptoms. Nearly half of future schizophrenic patients have behavioral and adjustment disorders ten years before their first hospitalization. But these disorders are not very specific: anxiety, depressed mood, loss of energy, academic difficulties, aggressiveness, withdrawal, suicidal behavior (14 times more than the general population) and addiction (about 40% of patients (Dima et al. 2010). "Positive" symptoms (fixed ideas, sensory illusions) can also occur intermittently or attenuated. People who have schizophrenia have a different perception of time than healthy people. There is much more variation in how a time interval is perceived by people with schizophrenic disorders than by those who do not have the condition. Patients with schizophrenia are also less accurate when it comes to judging the temporal order of events.

Schizophrenia is associated with structural and functional alterations of the visual system, with specific structural changes in the eye. Previous research has suggested that in schizophrenia, abnormalities in the processing of visual information in the brain contribute to the development of the disease, making the visual perception of movement, depth, contrast, color, the organization of visual elements and facial expressions. So far, few studies have examined whether these visual disturbances have structural correspondences in the retina or other structures of the eye. However, the link between vision problems and schizophrenia is well established, with 62% of patients suffering from visual distortion. Researchers at the Mount Sinai New York Eye and Ear Infirmary and Rutgers University conducted a review of the literature and studied data from 170 studies, some of which focused on these changes in the retina, others on changes related to dopamine and others on levels of key brain chemicals associated with the disease. This analysis leads to several indicators of ocular abnormalities in schizophrenia.

Three major indicators at the level of the retina:

Small blood vessels are dilated in the eyes of patients with schizophrenia and high-risk young people with the disease: the cause may be a chronic insufficiency of oxygen supply to the brain. This same reason could explain many of the visual disturbances observed in the condition. This indicator could also be a marker of the risk of disease and aggravation.

Thinning of the nerve fiber layer of the retina is the second index noted. It would be a cause of hallucinations in schizophrenia and visual acuity problems in patients with Parkinson's disease.

Abnormal responses of retinal cells exposed to light (measured by electroretinography) are also observed in patients with schizophrenia and may represent a third marker of disease progression.

The treatment of schizophrenia requires a pharmacological approach in addition to a series of interventions that are included in the expression "psychosocial rehabilitation." The antipsychotic drugs so effective in reducing positive symptoms, however, no significant improvements have been seen in the negatives. Nevertheless, with the second generation medication, in addition to the decrease of symptoms psychiatric conditions, it has been observed that it improves the mood and an improvement in neurocognitive functioning. It has been seen that these changes in the functioning neurocognitive could affect an improvement in the activities of daily life. The need for psychosocial intervention is justified in the insufficiency of medication and classical psychotherapy, since it focused on the development of symptomatology, especially in the negative symptoms, and not in the improvement in social functioning and the implementation of roles (Herzog & Brand, 2015). This social deficit was aggravated when the first psychotic episode occurred in adolescence. This was accompanied by deinstitutionalization, the use of antipsychotics and psychiatric hospitals, which led to the opening of mental health centers communities, which encouraged their insertion. This was due to several factors; some was the support for patients to recover their freedom and personal dignity; another was economic as it was much less expensive in psychiatric hospitals.

The most effective approaches to the psychosocial intervention are programs psycho educational, cognitive-behavioral therapy, family intervention, and therapy group. One of his main contributions came from the evolution of training in social skills, thus emerging the theories of social learning. Therefore, general objectives of psychosocial intervention in psychosis are to improve adaptation and quality of life of the patient, decrease anxiety, and improve the degree of stress (Brda & Tang, 2011). Some of the specific techniques that are used are the molding, chaining, and scaffolding, learning without errors, solving problems, training in achieving goals, training in the pressure of time, self-instruction, the creation of schemes for routine and non-routine tasks, planning, and assignment of tasks and handling of special situations.


Rarely the patient with this disease goes to the doctor because for some of them the hallucinations are real. It is necessary for a friend or relative to take it to be clinically evaluated. In most cases, there is no cure, but by working closely with doctors, many have managed the disease properly. If it is diagnosed promptly, the success of schizophrenia treatment is more likely. There are three fronts to attack the problem: antipsychotic drugs, psychotherapy, and rehabilitation. Among the antipsychotic medications are clozapine, risperidone, olanzapine, quetiapine, and ziprasidone (Horton & Silverstein, 2011). Psychotherapy can help the patient to learn to cope with stressful thoughts and situations. The psychotherapist also helps the patient to continue his medication. Family members who know the disease well are a factor that increases...

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