Compare and Contrast Two or More Theories of Schizophrenia.

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Compare and contrast two or more theories of Schizophrenia.

Schizophrenia, a Greek word meaning “split brain”, was coined by Eugen Bleuler in 1908 to describe a type of dementia praecox which emphasizes a break from reality and disintegration between emotions, thought and actions. In contemporary term, schizophrenia is a mental disorder with impairments in the perception, psychomotor behaviour and affect; manifested as a syndrome characterized by two categories of symptoms, positive (hallucinations, delusions and disorganization) and negative (social withdrawal, apathy, poverty of speech), expressed variably in the sufferers (Crow, 1980; Andreasen, 1995). Although the underlying mechanism of schizophrenia remains somewhat elusive, theories of the causation of schizophrenia based on evidence at different levels, ranging from biochemical, neurodevelopmental, cognitive to social, have been proposed. In this essay, I will focus on two of the most prominent theories, Dopamine hypothesis and neurodevelopmental theory. I will first outline the main body and the evidence in support of the theories, and then compare the theories on the basis of its explanation of the development and associated symptoms of schizophrenia, and corresponding limitations. Here, I would like to argue that despite the differences between the two theories, they are not mutually exclusive; contrarily, they can complement each other to give a better picture of the causation of Schizophrenia.

Dopamine hypothesis has been suggested to be one of the few theories with strong empirical ground and has attracted a lot of attention in the research and drug treatment for the last 50 years. Carlsson and Lindqvist (1963) first proposed the “dopamine hypothesis”, stating that schizophrenia is caused by over-reactivity of dopaminergic system (especially in the mesolimbic dopamine projection). This hypothesis…...

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