3closer to 100% if genetics were the sole cause, leading researchers to conclude thatenvironmental factors must also play a role. At present, it has only been suggestedthat something in the environment may trigger a person, who is geneticallypredisposed, towards schizophrenia but no specific environmental sources have beenfound (Maguire, 2002). Knowledge of each of these hypotheses will give nursesinsight into why certain symptoms occur and how different treatments work.The nursing care of a patient diagnosed with schizophrenia is veryindividualized, depending on their specific diagnoses and symptoms. A number of other psychiatric disorders, including bipolar disorder, personality disorders and
substance induced psychotic disorders were eliminated prior to “John’s” diagnosis of
paranoid schizophrenia. A detailed history, both physical and psychological was takento determine if the patient displayed any symptoms of schizophrenia related psychosisin the lead up to the psychotic episode. The presence of two or more of the followingsymptoms over a one month period are diagnostic criteria for schizophrenia-hallucinations, delusions, disorganized behavior, alogia (lack of speech) andavolilition (lack of motivation) (Maguire, 2002). Social and occupational dysfunction,over a period of six months, is also included in the criteria. A detailed history taken
from “John” and his parents found that he displayed many of these signs, for example,
auditory hallucinations, delusions and paranoia regarding his sister, along with socialand behavioral dysfunction.
Assessment of “John’s” symptoms on admission and throughout his
hospitilisation is extremely important as symptoms guide treatment plans.
Schizophrenia cannot be cured so treatment is based on controlling the patient’s