Schizophrenia is not disappearing in south-west Scotland

J. Allardyce*, G. Morrison, J. Van Os, J. Kelly, R. M. Murray, R. G. McCreadie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Background: Recent work has reported a decline in the incidence of schizophrenia, but it is unclear if these findings reflect a true decrease in its incidence or are an artefact arising from methodological difficulties. Aims: To take account of these methodological difficulties and report service-based incidence rates for schizophrenia in Dumfries and Galloway in south-west Scotland for 1979-98. Method: Using both clinical diagnoses and diagnoses generated from the Operational Checklist for Psychotic Disorders (OPCRIT) computer algorithm for ICD-10 and DSM-IV schizophrenia, we measured change in the incidence rates over time. We used indirect standardisation techniques and Poisson models to measure the rate ratio linear trend. Results: There was a monotonic and statistically significant decline in clinically diagnosed schizophrenia. The summary rate ratio linear trend was 0.77. However, using OPCRIT-generated ICD-10 and DSM-IV diagnoses, there was no significant difference over time. Conclusions: OPCRIT-generated consistent diagnoses revealed no significant fait in the incidence of schizophrenia. Changes in diagnostic practice have caused the declining rates of clinically diagnosed schizophrenia in Dumfries and Galloway. Declaration of interest: This work was supported by the Stanley Foundation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)38-41
Number of pages4
JournalBritish Journal of Psychiatry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2000


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