Social functioning deficits are a core component of schizophrenia spectrum disorders, and may emerge years prior to the onset of diagnosable illness. The current study prospectively examines the relation between teacher-rated childhood social dysfunction and later mental illness among participants who were at genetic high-risk for schizophrenia and controls (n=244). The teacher-rated social functioning scale significantly predicted psychiatric outcomes (schizophrenia-spectrum vs. other psychiatric disorder vs. no mental illness). Poor premorbid social functioning appears to constitute a marker of illness vulnerability and may also function as a chronic stressor potentially exacerbating risk for illness.
Schizophrenia Research, 2013, Vol 151, Issue 1-3, p. 270-273
Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Schizophrenia-spectrum; Premorbid; Social functioning; Psychosis; Teachers