The schizophrenias are uncommon before the age of 14 but incidence/prevalence figures are lacking. The 1-year incidence, clinical features and short-term outcomes in childhood-onset schizophrenia spectrum disorder were evaluated via the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Surveillance System. Fifteen children with a provisional diagnosis were reported. Outcome data were obtained for 12 individuals, 8 of whom met the diagnostic criteria, equating to an estimated incidence of 0.21/100 000 (95% CI 0.08–0.34). Delusions and thought disorder were a more consistent predictor of ‘caseness' than hallucinations. Illness outcomes at 1 year were generally poor. Childhood-onset schizophrenia appears to be a rare but serious disorder.
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