Schizophrenia sufferers miss out on heart disease diagnosis

(Medical Xpress)—Those diagnosed with schizophrenia are less likely than the general population to have a recorded diagnosis of heart disease, a new report published in BMJ Open has found.

This is of significance because on average, people with schizophrenia die between 15-20 years earlier than the general population and the most common cause of death is cardiovascular disease.

The researchers looked at the primary care records of almost 1.8 million individuals in Scotland and found that people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia have very high levels of multiple physical health problems, such as diabetes and hepatitis, but are less likely than the general population to have a recorded diagnosis of .

The findings suggest a systematic failure within the health service to adequately detect, record and treat cardiovascular disease in people with schizophrenia and open up the possibility of developing new integrated services for this group of patients aimed at improving their physical health, quality of life and life expectancy.

Dr Daniel Smith, Reader in Psychiatry, part of The University of Glasgow's Institute of Health and Wellbeing said

"This study has found that people with schizophrenia have a wide range of multiple physical health problems but are less likely than people without schizophrenia to have a primary care record of cardiovascular disease. This suggests a systematic under-recognition and under-treatment of cardiovascular disease in people with which might contribute to substantial observed within this patient group."

"We need to investigate further the relationship between and serious mental illness but our work suggests that the NHS can do more to detect in this vulnerable group and reduce the current inequality in diagnosis and treatment."

More information: bmjopen.bmj.com/content/3/4/e002808.abstract

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New findings on mortality of individuals with schizophrenia

Jan 21, 2013

A new study from Lund University in Sweden shows that the average life expectancy of men and women with schizophrenia is 15 years and 12 years shorter respectively than for those who do not suffer from the disease. The study ...

Schizophrenia: Regular exercise guidelines still apply

May 11, 2010

Regular exercise can play an important a role in improving the physical and mental wellbeing of individuals with schizophrenia, according to a review published in The Cochrane Library. Following a systematic review of the ...

Recommended for you

Social ties matter beyond bushfires

1 hour ago

In the first major release of findings from the Beyond Bushfires study of the aftermath of the Black Saturday bushfires, researchers from the University of Melbourne have been able to show the social element ...

Mom's prenatal hardship turns baby's genes on and off

1 hour ago

In January 1998 five days of freezing rain collapsed the electrical grid of the Canadian province of Québec. The storm left more than 3 million people without electricity for anywhere from a few hours to ...

Smoking rates high among people with psychotic illness

1 hour ago

The rate of smoking among people in Adelaide's northern suburbs who suffer from a psychotic illness is much greater than the national average and is contributing to other major health problems, according to new research from ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.