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Copyright ©The Author(s) 2018. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Psychiatr. Nov 9, 2018; 8(5): 125-136
Published online Nov 9, 2018. doi: 10.5498/wjp.v8.i5.125
Women who suffer from schizophrenia: Critical issues
Mary V Seeman
Mary V Seeman, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Institute of Medical Science, Toronto, ON M5P 3L6, Canada
Author contributions: Seeman MV is the sole author and responsible for every aspect of this paper; she received no assistance and no funding.
Conflict-of-interest statement: None.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article which was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/
Correspondence to: Mary V Seeman, DSc, FRCP (C), MD, Emeritus Professor, Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Institute of Medical Science, #605 260 Heath St. W., Toronto, ON M5P 3L6, Canada. mary.seeman@utoronto.ca
Telephone: +1-416-4863456
Received: July 18, 2018
Peer-review started: July 18, 2018
First decision: August 2, 2018
Revised: August 24, 2018
Accepted: October 11, 2018
Article in press: October 11, 2018
Published online: November 9, 2018
Abstract

Many brain diseases, including schizophrenia, affect men and women unequally - either more or less frequently, or at different times in the life cycle, or to varied degrees of severity. With updates from recent findings, this paper reviews the work of my research group over the last 40 years and underscores issues that remain critical to the optimal care of women with schizophrenia, issues that overlap with, but are not identical to, the cares and concerns of men with the same diagnosis. Clinicians need to be alert not only to the overarching needs of diagnostic groups, but also to the often unique needs of women and men.

Keywords: Schizophrenia, Women, Gender differences, Unmet needs

Core tip: Schizophrenia and related disorders are expressed differently in men and women. Causative factors may differ, as can the expression, timing and severity of symptoms. Prevention, course of illness, and treatment response are all intimately linked to gender.