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February 1965

Thought Disorder and Family Relations of Schizophrenics: IV. Results and Implications

Author Affiliations

From the Adult Psychiatry Branch, Clinical Investigations, National Institute of Mental Health, National Institutes of Health, Public Health Service, United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1965;12(2):201-212. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1965.01720320089010

A. Introduction

IN COMPANION papers on the Family Studies research at the National Institute of Mental Health, we have indicated that our research has been focused upon links between individual schizophrenic impairment and family patterns of thinking and communicating.1-5

In the study of individual offspring we have been especially concerned with the structural or formal aspects of ego disorganization, particularly thought disorder. We have conceptualized schizophrenic thinking along a continuum based upon broad developmental principles in which relatively "amorphous" forms of thinking can be distinguished from better differentiated but still "fragmented" forms of thinking.3 In the present study we have also used a dimension of severity of ego disorganization as well as traditional diagnostic distinctions.

In the study of family patterns we have been especially concerned with those family styles of communicating and relating which help shape a growing child's forms of thinking.

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