Written by Cătălina CRIȘAN, Nicoleta VLASIN, Irina DUTCHIEVICI, Andrea NEMEȘ, Ioana MICLUȚIA on . Posted in Special section: Volume XX, Nr 4


Cătălina CRIȘAN1,*, Nicoleta VLASIN2, Irina DUTCHIEVICI2, Andrea NEMEȘ1, Ioana MICLUȚIA1

1 Department of Psychiatry and Pediatric Psychiatry, University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Iuliu Hațieganu”, Cluj-Napoca
2 Psychiatric Clinic, Emergency County Hospital Cluj-Napoca


Insight and self-stigma are viewed as important factors in illness evolution and its long-term management in schizophrenia patients, elevated levels favoring the appearance of depressive symptoms. However, it’s not very clear why awareness of illness can result in depression, hence we assessed insight and self-stigma in patients with schizophrenia and their possible connections to their depressive symptoms. Our study included 60 patients, admitted to a psychiatric hospital and diagnosed with different forms of schizophrenia. Socio-demographical data were collected using a semi-structured interview, whereas psychotic symptoms and insight were evaluated using the Positive and Negative Symptoms Scale. The Internalized Stigma of Mental Illness scale was used to assess self-stigma, whereas the Calgary Depression Rating Scale was used to assess depression. The majority of patients had low level insight regarding their mental illness and recorded mild internalized stigma. Positive schizophrenia symptoms were associated to low illness awareness and self-stigma. Moreover, the presence of depression was associated to alienation, social withdrawal, perceived discrimination, and internalized stigma. Findings suggest that illness awareness and self-stigma are key factors in schizophrenia, as they can influence the onset of depressive symptoms and the evolution of this disorder. The recognition and assessment of these two factors are useful for a better management of the illness.

KEYWORDS: insight, self-stigma, depression, schizophrenia

PAGES: 345-355

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