Monday, September 10, 2012

Can a New Eye Test Detect Schizophrenia?

A mathematical model that assesses eye movements known to be abnormal in individuals with schizophrenia appears to discriminate schizophrenia cases from controls with near-perfect accuracy. The lead scientist was Philip Benson, Ph.D., of the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, and study findings were published in Biological Psychiatry.

"This is a very interesting study," L. Elliot Hong, M.D., a professor of psychiatry at the University of Maryland and a schizophrenia expert, commented to Psychiatric News. "[However] the important next steps are [determining] whether these measures are specific only to schizophrenia or whether they can also separate different psychiatric diagnoses...." Benson agreed. "We already know that the model can distinguish cases diagnosed with bipolar disorder [from those diagnosed with schizophrenia] with around 95 percent accuracy. We have preliminary data suggesting that major depressive disorder can also be distinguished [from schizophrenia], which is a tremendously exciting finding."

To read more about this study, see the latest issue of Psychiatric News.

 (Image: Constant/


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