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Ask the Experts

Question:

Are there new therapies for a boy, age 22, with schizophrenia?

Answered by: Alice Medalia

New therapies are always being developed for people with schizophrenia.

Broadly speaking, therapies can be divided into pharamacologic and behavioral. The treating psychiatrist would be an excellent person to ask about the latest pharmacologic interventions and whether any would be indicated.

In terms of behavioral interventions, there are now therapies that focus on the social and cognitive problems that people with schizophrenia experience. These therapies are called cognitive remediation and social cognition training. While not new, it is also important to remember interventions like supportive employment, and supportive education, which are intended to help people reach their vocational and educational goals.

Finally, cognitive behavioral therapy is being used to address symptoms like delusions, paranoia, and hallucinations. Recovery based therapy programs typically offer an array of behavioral treatments that are designed to give people the skills to manage their illness and reach their personal goals.