Aggression among Chronic Schizophrenic Patients

V.M.Samy, M.M.El Hamady, S.T.El Bakry and A.E.Sayer-Dayer"


Patients suffering from schizophrenia are often portrayed in the media as being unpredictably aggressive and violent. Not only the prevalence of violence is similar in psychiatric patients and in the general population, but also many studies proved that aggression levels may be higher in the general population. Many factors, including insufficient social support to mental illnesses, drug abuse, and symptom exacerbations, can precipitate aggressive behavior. Another important major risk factor for aggression is the failure to treat schizophrenic patients adequately.Aggressive behavior and impulsivity are often found in paranoid schizophrenia and can occur during both acute and chronic phases of the illness. Impulsivity is defined as action without planning or reflection, and it seems to be related to a failure of behavioral filtering outside of consciousness.The assessment not only how aggressive patient is, but also how that aggression is manifested by studying aggression-related symptoms, including hostility, anger, and impulsivity.In this cross sectional observational study, 30 patients [16 male&14 female] aged between 21 & 56 years old diagnosed with Schizophrenia and 60 controls were recruited. This sample was totally selected from outpatient clinic of Benha Mental Hospital. All patients in the study were subjected to a detailed history taking, complete general examination, neuropsychiatric clinical assessment, a semistructured interview empathizing the sociodemographic data, the criteria of schizophrenia diagnosis and the Buss and Perry Aggression Questionnaire. The collected data were tabulated and analyzed using SPSS version21 software. Regarding Information obtained from ICD-10 in the studied group and types of schizophrenia: 62.5% of males and 57% of females were considered aggressive, while of the control group; 69% of females and 65% of males were aggressive.The control sample was almost as aggressive as the sample of patients suffering from chronic schizophrenia. Females and males are similarly aggressive. Patients using combined treatment of atypical antipsychotics and mood stabilizers had higher aggressive scores than who used atypical antipsychotics only.There is not much relationship between marital status and education and aggression. The duration of illness did not affect the type or level of aggression, nor did previous forensic history.

Key words

Anger, Hostility, Aggression, Schizophrenia, victimization, Stigma