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June 1981

Parental Communication Deviance and Affective Style: Predictors of Subsequent Schizophrenia Spectrum Disorders in Vulnerable Adolescents

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Psychology, University of California, Los Angeles. Dr Jones is now with the Department of Psychology, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Rochester, NY.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1981;38(6):679-685. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1981.01780310079008

• In an attempt to assess the contributory role of family factors to the development of schizophrenia-like disorders, measures of parental communication deviance and affective styles of communication were obtained for a sample of families of disturbed but nonpsychotic adolescents. Outcome was assessed five years later. Absence of a pathologic affective style was associated with a benign outcome, but neither parental variable alone allowed precise identification of the schizophrenia-spectrum cases. However, an index using a combination of both variables was statistically predictive of subsequent psychiatric status at follow-up. Thus, adolescents whose parents had both a pathologic affective style of communication and a high level of communication deviance had schizophrenia-like disorders develop in young adulthood. Adolescents of parents who had both lower levels of communication deviance and a benign affective style had offspring with healthier outcomes.

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