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November 1994

Brain Atrophy or Dystrophy in Schizophrenia: When Did It Happen?

Author Affiliations

Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry Oregon Health Sciences University 3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Rd Portland, OR 97201

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1994;51(11):927. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1994.03950110087013

B et al, 1 reporting on a quantitative magnetic resonance imaging investigation of 44 neuroleptic-treated schizophrenic patients and 29 healthy volunteers, found a decrease in volume of left and right amygdalahippocampal complex and a smaller volume of right and left prefrontal white matter in the schizophrenic group. These findings support and extend similar results by others from previous imaging and quantitative postmortem studies.2-6

This study1 also measured total cerebral and cerebrospinal fluid volume based on an outline of the dura on serial magnetic resonance imaging slices, excluding the brain stem and cerebellum. There was no significant difference between the schizophrenic cohort and controls in this measure of total cerebral volume, which may be considered to be equivalent to the measurement of head circumference. Many investigators consider that a reduction in the volume of the medial temporal lobe and other structures in schizophrenia represents a "neurodevelopmental disorder," ie, a

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