By describing patterns of disease distribution within populations, identifying risk factors, and finding associations, epidemiologic studies have contributed to the current understanding of schizophrenia. Advanced paternal age and the association with autoimmune diseases are some of the newly described epidemiologic findings shaping the current definition of schizophrenia. Although early intervention strategies have gained momentum, primary prevention of schizophrenia still seems a very distant aspiration. This article reviews the major epidemiological features of schizophrenia, with particular attention to the recent advances using population-based data. It also discusses some pervasive misconceptions about schizophrenia epidemiology, such as universal distribution and gender equality.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychiatry and Mental health