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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 34  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 69-78

Role of perceived family environment in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia

1 School of Study in Psychology, Pandit Ravishankar Shukla University, Raipur, Chhattisgarh, India
2 Mission Arogya Health and Information Technology Research Foundation, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Roshan Lal Dewangan
Pandit Ravishankar Shukla University, Raipur - 492 010, Chhattisgarh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijsp.ijsp_29_17

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Background: Family plays an important role in mental health of its member, thus its contribution can also be discerned in pathogenesis. Maintenance and relapse of several mental illnesses have been also attributed to the family environment (FE). This study explores FE as perceived by schizophrenia patients. Methodology: A case–control study was conducted in Chhattisgarh, India, to measure the association of perceived FE with schizophrenia. Between February 2014 and January 2015, 100 paranoid schizophrenia patients and 100 neighborhood-based healthy (based on 28-item General Health Questionnaire) controls were recruited. Minimum school-educated individuals aged 20–35 years were eligible if they/their caregivers provided consent. Interpersonal relationships and FE were assessed by an interviewer-administered 69-item FE scale. Results: The odds of suffering from schizophrenia increased with age, decreased with education, income, and found to be less among married. Schizophrenia risk was negatively associated with mean scores for cohesion, acceptance/caring, active-recreational orientation, and organization. Negative symptoms of schizophrenia were less pronounced among patients belonging to joint families. Conclusion: Thus, to minimize the burden and morbidity associated with schizophrenia, interventions to improve FE by minimizing conflict and improving cohesion, acceptance/caring, active-recreational orientation, and organization, and specifically targeting older, less-educated, poor, and married individuals in nuclear families seemed necessary.

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