Can Asperger's Syndrome be confused with Schizophrenia?

Page 1 of 2 [ 30 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

Currently_Sleeping
Hummingbird
Hummingbird

User avatar

Joined: 2 Oct 2010
Gender: Male
Posts: 22
Location: UK

26 Oct 2010, 8:50 am

Before I was diagnosed with AS I was pretty sure I had schizophrenia, I was wondering if anyone else had thought the same. I found this question in "The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome" by Tony Attwood.

"Hans Asperger was keen to differentiate autistic personality disorder from schizophrenia, and noted that, 'while the schizophrenic patient seems to show progressive loss of contact, the children we are discussing lack contact from the start'. However, in the past and still today, some young adults with Asperger's syndrome are referred for a psychiatric assessment for schizophrenia."

I too was assessed to see if i had schizophrenia, but I came out with AS.



wavefreak58
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 26 Sep 2010
Age: 63
Gender: Male
Posts: 4,419
Location: Western New York

26 Oct 2010, 9:20 am

It is possible for an autistic to improve by learning strategies and coping mechanisms. Schizophrenia is not something that improves without medication and often degenerates into deeper psychosis.

Informally, an autistic has a truncated view of reality, limited by perceptual and processing differences. But what portions of realty make it through the barriers of perception and processing are assembled correctly into accurate referents of the real world, even if severely limited. A schizophrenic has a false view of reality. The processing and perception of a schizophrenic results in mental states where their reality does not exist anywhere but within their own mind.

Can the two be confused? Sure, especially by an inept, misinformed or ignorant diagnostician. If an autistic cannot adequately communicate their mental states, then it would be easy to conclude that the have no basis in reality. But a competent practitioner will be able to separate a truncated perception of reality from one that is completely false.



dyingofpoetry
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 25 Apr 2010
Age: 57
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,201
Location: Fairmont, WV

26 Oct 2010, 10:59 am

Just before my Asperger's diagnosis, I thought that I was mildly schizophrenic. It was the only thing that made sense to me after years of being misdiagnosed with bipolar, ADHD, and other disorders. I based my conclusion on my unusual perceptions and feeling of isolation. I knew I was experiencing life in a way that was different than the way others experienced it, and that it was somewhat solipsistic, but not quite psychotic.

I felt it might have been a touch of schizophrenia and I was going to suggest that to my doctor until my best friend, who is a psychologist, told me flat out one day, "you have Asperger's syndrome," which preempted the suggestion and changed my life forever.


_________________
"If you can't call someone else an idiot, then you are obviously not very good at what you do."


glider18
Supporting Member
Supporting Member

User avatar

Joined: 8 Nov 2008
Gender: Male
Posts: 8,031
Location: USA

26 Oct 2010, 11:04 am

With me, I have autism, and I tend to live in my "dream" world. But I realize it is a "dream" world and not reality. When I need to do the chores of life, I do the chores of life. I am not stuck in this "dream" world. My "dream" world consists of my interests. I believe a schizophrenic individual may think of his/her "dream" world as reality.


_________________
"My journey has just begun."


OddFiction
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 9 Aug 2010
Age: 45
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,090
Location: Ontario, Canada

26 Oct 2010, 11:17 am

Another point -

Schizophrenia usually begins at the onset of puberty and progresses from there.
ASDs are considered to begin at conception/birth.



StuartN
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 20 Jan 2010
Age: 57
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,569

26 Oct 2010, 11:38 am

Currently_Sleeping wrote:
"... However, in the past and still today, some young adults with Asperger's syndrome are referred for a psychiatric assessment for schizophrenia."


This is also my experience, and apparently common. It is especially so for people who are undiagnosed and are evaluated for the first time in adulthood, perhaps for depression or anxiety - in other words, there has often been a real change in the psychiatric presentation, but the autistic traits mislead even competent diagnosticians.

If the autistic spectrum disorder is not recognized, then it can lead to a great deal of unnecessary treatment to "return" the person to an assumed level of previous function, rather than that person's own normal.



Callista
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 3 Feb 2006
Age: 38
Gender: Female
Posts: 10,775
Location: Ohio, USA

26 Oct 2010, 12:36 pm

Occasionally it can be mistaken, yes. The traits that may throw off a doctor are the odd movement, stimming, and flat affect/monotone or singsong voice, and communication problems including mutism. It's important to get a childhood history in these cases; seeing the early stages or between-episode traits of schizophrenia is something that really needs to be addressed ASAP with antipsychotics; but if it's Asperger's, then using antipsychotics is generally a bad idea.


_________________
Reports from a Resident Alien:
http://chaoticidealism.livejournal.com

Autism Memorial:
http://autism-memorial.livejournal.com


Valoyossa
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 20 Feb 2010
Age: 34
Gender: Female
Posts: 2,287
Location: Freie Stadt Danzig

26 Oct 2010, 1:05 pm

In Poland if you are an odd adult, you'll be diagnosed with schizophrenia. It's really hard to get AS dx, because it's not well known and thought "children only". So many people keep away from the doctors. I was dxed with schizophrenia too, but one person in my family works with "odd kids", she knows me since my odd childhood (I was always weird) and she said Hey, people, wait, she's autistic, not schizophrenic!


_________________
Change Your Frequency, when you're talking to me!
----
Das gehört verboten! http://tinyurl.com/toobigtoosmall size does matter after all
----
My Industrial Love: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rBo5K0ZQIEY


League_Girl
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 4 Feb 2010
Gender: Female
Posts: 25,970
Location: Pacific Northwest

26 Oct 2010, 1:17 pm

In high school I thought I was getting schizophrenia. Then I watched A beautiful Mind and I saw I wasn't even close to having it.



Valoyossa
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 20 Feb 2010
Age: 34
Gender: Female
Posts: 2,287
Location: Freie Stadt Danzig

26 Oct 2010, 1:24 pm

There is a scene in Beautiful Mind with pattern on the glass and tie. And other when he looks on the numbers and he finds the system. People said oh, Valoy, you have the same, don't you? - ya, I have, but I don't see unexisting people and I don't work for top secret corporation.


_________________
Change Your Frequency, when you're talking to me!
----
Das gehört verboten! http://tinyurl.com/toobigtoosmall size does matter after all
----
My Industrial Love: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rBo5K0ZQIEY


Delirium
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 24 Nov 2007
Age: 31
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,573
Location: not here

26 Oct 2010, 1:43 pm

First of all, I love your icon. Plague doctors are awesome.

Secondly, schizoid personality disorder and Asperger's share a lot of the same symptoms. You might want to look that up.


_________________
I don't post here anymore. If you want to talk to me, go to the WP Facebook group or my Last.fm account.


wavefreak58
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 26 Sep 2010
Age: 63
Gender: Male
Posts: 4,419
Location: Western New York

26 Oct 2010, 2:09 pm

An autistic experiences life with two hands tied behind their back

A schizophrenic experiences life with three hands tied behind their back.



oliverthered
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 8 Apr 2010
Age: 44
Gender: Male
Posts: 617
Location: southport, uk

26 Oct 2010, 6:12 pm

they can seem quite similar on the 'outside', as autistic people often notice patterns in things in a similar way to schizoid people, and also have synaesthesia.
But,
autistic people don't attach themselves to things. (i.e. they will question the reality and validity of something, or ask others for confirmation etc... e.g. Do you think I'm like Jesus?)
schizophrenic people do attach themselves to things. (that is that they think it's them, and don't realise that it's not. e.g. I'm Jesus)

Autistic humour not withstanding.

So confusion can arise.

Also in countries where meds aren't available people with schizoid personalties have much better prognosis. The people I know who are full term on the meds still have the issues, but are basically thoughtless and 'self centred' and getting as many drugs down their neck as possible.

The people not on meds, or who took them for a brief period are all doing really well.



oliverthered
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 8 Apr 2010
Age: 44
Gender: Male
Posts: 617
Location: southport, uk

26 Oct 2010, 6:26 pm

I actually spoken to a friend who I witness develop psychosis.

He was thinking intensely about the the universe and time, relating it to himself.

He went a bit, off colour, for a bit.

Now if someone coughs he hears a voice.
Which he says he hears before the cough.
He won't have it any other way. Won't even do something like hit a button on the keyboard when he hears to voice to see if it's before or after the cough.

It's like to him it's a fundamental part of reality and to see otherwise would doubt his entire existence.

He also became a bit religious, and things his spirit is interwoven through future and past time. (in-fact won't have it any other way).

Apart from that he get's on with life pretty well, well since he stopped taking the meds!

I can manage to present things to him in therms of his frame of reality, but he has some difficulty in interpreting mine.

I know where I'm not and where I've been,
But I don't know where I am, or where I'm going.
So I'm trying to find out.
So in that way I'm am in a sense interwoven in time and space as you are.



buryuntime
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 6 Dec 2008
Age: 83
Gender: Female
Posts: 3,662

26 Oct 2010, 6:32 pm

Yes. I'm actually worried I might be confused with a schizophrenic because my movements are so prominently odd and schizophrenia is certainly more associated with people of my age than autism is.



GaijinRanger
Raven
Raven

User avatar

Joined: 23 Oct 2010
Age: 34
Gender: Male
Posts: 102

26 Oct 2010, 6:44 pm

I move around (and have always done so) much like Jack Sparrow does. I'm quite animated and unconventional in my movements, but at the same time they are very fluid.

I was kept in the mental ward for a weekend once after being diagnosed with mild schizophrenia. I was given medical leave from work after that. My mum is a hypochondriac however, and, based on how my psychiatrist feels about my mum, he figures I am the exact same and doesn't really exert any effort in his dealings with me.