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July 1982

Cerebral Ventricular Enlargement in Subtypes of Chronic Schizophrenia

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Psychiatry (Drs Nasrallah and Kuperman) and Radiology (Dr Jacoby), University of Iowa College of Medicine and the Veterans Administration Medical Center (Drs Nasrallah and Kuperman and Ms McCalley-Whitters), Iowa City.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1982;39(7):774-777. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1982.04290070010003

• A computed tomographic study of the brain in 55 young men with chronic schizophrenia and 27 age- and sex-matched control subjects showed a significantly higher ventricle-brain ratio (VBR) in the patients with chronic schizophrenia. Using the Tsuang-Winokur criteria, the sample was classified into paranoid and nonparanoid-hebephrenic subtypes. Nonparanoid patients who did not fulfill the criteria for hebephrenia were grouped as a nonparanoid-undifferentiated subtype. All three groups of subtypes had a significantly higher mean VBR than control subjects. Among the schizophrenia subtypes, the paranoid and nonparanoid-hebephrenic groups were not different, and both had a significantly larger mean VBR than the nonparanoid-undifferentiated group. The results suggest that although the extent of ventricular enlargement varies among schizophrenia subtypes, they all show a significant enlargement compared with the control group. Also, in contrast with previous reports linking a high VBR with negative symptoms, poor prognosis, and impaired cognition, the data in this study show the largest mean VBR in the paranoid patients who generally have a good premorbid history, positive symptoms, less impaired cognition, and relatively better prognosis.

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