Epidemiology and risk factors of schizophrenia.

: Schizophrenia is a severe mental disorder that affects approximately one percent of the general population. The pathogenesis of schizophrenia is influenced by many risk factors, both environmental and genetic. The environmental factors include the date of birth, place of birth and seasonal effects, infectious diseases, complications during pregnancy and delivery, substance abuse and stress. At the present time, in addition to environmental factors, genetic factors are assumed to play a role in the development of the schizophrenia. The heritability of schizo- phrenia is up to 80%. If one parent suffers from the condition, the probability that it will be passed down to the offspring is 13%. If it is present in both parents, the risk is more than 20%. The opinions are varied as to the risk factors affecting the development of schizophrenia. Knowing these factors may greatly contribute to prevention of the condition.

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