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Diabetes mellitus and schizophrenia: Historical perspective

  • Dora Kohen (a1)
Abstract
Background

Although recent research has focused on the possible role of antipsychotic medications in the development of diabetes mellitus, studies conducted in the pre-neurolepticera suggest that schizophrenia itself might predispose individuals to diabetes.

Aims

To test the hypothesis that diabetes mellitus is an integral part of schizophrenia.

Method

Historical literature review.

Results

Many people with severe mental illnesses, including dementia praecox, showed abnormal responses to insulin and diabetes-like glucose tolerance curves long before the advent of phenothiazines. Early studies with chlorpromazine suggested that a latent tendency towards diabetes in patients with schizophrenia could be unmasked by this treatment.

Conclusions

Diabetes and disturbed carbohydrate metabolism maybe an integral part of schizophrenia. Further research is required to explain how metabolic factors, medications and lifestyle factors might precipitate diabetes in patients with this mental disorder.

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Copyright
References
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The British Journal of Psychiatry
  • ISSN: 0007-1250
  • EISSN: 1472-1465
  • URL: /core/journals/the-british-journal-of-psychiatry
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Diabetes mellitus and schizophrenia: Historical perspective

  • Dora Kohen (a1)
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