I Get to Post Here Now!

Officially got my diagnosis today of Schizoaffective Disorder. It’s a huge relief and a burden lifted to know what is wrong with me after all this time.

How has this diagnosis, for anyone with Schizophrenia or Schizoaffective Disorder, changed your life for better or worse? Or is it basically just the same? Still taking Haldol but it’s been reduced to 5mg every night and added 50mg of Seroquel.

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Glad it has brought some relief to you, for me it’s just labels, the important part is how you look after yourself and find a good balance working with those you need to.

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For me I agree and disagree my diagnose depending on my current mood. It’s just a lable and lables can change depending on the doctor you see.

About 4 years ago I didn’t think I needed to get treatment and went without it for two years before the severity of the disease taught me not to take it lightly. Since the diagnosis I have tried to live my life like normal while taking the meds. It’s tricky to try and see if you are sane. I have to be wary in case the voices increase and I need an increase in medication. Also I seem to mostly have positive symptoms. Alogia seems to be one that is negative that I have though.

Definitely changed my life for the better. I left my self destructive ways behind. :slight_smile:

I’m still in denial. Although I don’t have a definitive diagnosis. How do you get one? I thought the doctor just makes an estimated guess based on the symptoms you describe.

tbh i dont know what would of happened if i didnt get diagnosed because it didnt happen so i would only be guessing, i got my diagnosis after being sectioned and assessed in a locked ward for about 28days (i think thats when i got diagnosed anyway) its a bit sketchy

The best way is to read the DSM and describe it the way it’s listed in the manual.

It was a relief for me as well. The confirmation that others, especially authority figures like a psychiatrist, saw my experiences as a psychotic disorder too meant a great deal to me, it helped to anchor and retain insight and peace of mind.

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I think its a little more than just an estimated guess @Sunlion , they are trained professionals, most of them anyway. Most of the time they wont tell you what the dx is either so they do not “lead” you somewhere. But overall The treatment is what is important not the dx.

It took over 2 years to finally get my pdoc to tell me his official dx of me only because i was filing for disability. Before that he just tiptoed around the subject never giving a clear answer, saying it could be this or could be that. It does take time for them to make their official dx so i guess the initial dx would be somewhat of a guess, but its a start.

Also, There are many illnesses that act very similar so it may be hard to differentiate between them early on, as well as some change over time. It is not uncommon to have different varying dx changing over the years as things manifest or go into remission. But always remember the dx and its labels are for paperwork and insurance purposes, the Treatment and Recovery Plan are what is truly important to us as patients.

We dont need the dx for any purpose but to enhance the stigma within ourselves, ultimately possibily undermining the treatment process.

Although, for me, knowing my dx did help me to escape some deeply ingrained denial and actually learn more about myself and my illness, but these can and usually are addresses in psychotherapy as well, which should be part of your treatment process.

Overall, use your dx to better understand tourself and your behaviors and triggers but do not get hung up thinking you may be this or that, because a lot of the time this and that are both treated in a similar fashion with the same medications. Its nice to have an answer to your many questions of what you may suffer from, but the labels required by healthcare are of no consequence to us and our treatment process, in my opinion.

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It’s true that treatment is more important than diagnosis but it’s equally true that you need to know the correct diagnosis in order to receive the proper treatment. Different types of psychoses respond better to different medications. In SzA for example, only Invega is authorized by the FDA.

Getting my diagnosis was bittersweet. I was happy and relieved to know what was wrong with me, but no one wants to have SZ so it was a hard pill told swallow knowing that I had a severe incurable mental illness. Glad you feel like a weight has been lifted after being diagnosed!

For me initially it was like putting the final piece of a puzzle together. AHA moment. Here is what is wrong with me. It all made sense when they described the dx and my symptoms correlated. Since that time it hasn’t really made much of difference. I’ve gone through the stages of grief several times over - from denial, depression to acceptance (and all the rest) and back again. I’ve been trying to push forward with my recovery. I make some progress, plateau, take a step backward, move forward a few steps, then backward, plateau…

Thanks to everyone for sharing here. I feel like I’ve made a lot of progress even without a dx because I’m 28, so I’ve had these symptoms for a long time and have had to learn how to manage them as best I can. I started having psychotic symptoms when I was 13 and had my first terrible psychotic episode when I was 18. This isn’t new… To me it’s like, if your stomach hurts and for years doctors keep saying they don’t know what it is and suck it up. Only finally after 10 years they find out the cause and even if they can’t fix it you’re relieved to know that there’s a real reason for it, you didn’t imagine it. It’s relief.

“Changed your life for better or worse?”

It depends all on the kind of day I am having. I was initially diagnosed as paranoid sz. but that’s been changed to sza recently.

Some days I feel like I am in hell, others I feel like I have so many goals that I am capable of achieving (in spite of illness) and that there’s not enough time.

HAPPY THAT u got ur diagnosis…!!!

Make seroquel temporary, or else you’re going to gain 80 to 100 pounds on it like I did.

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Getting a diagnosis for me wasn’t really a happy moment, it had no emotion attached to it at all. I’d been “suffering” schizophrenia for many many years before seeing treatment and the diagnosis was merely a label to me.

I was being treated long before the psychiatrist disclosed the diagnosis to me. When he first saw me I was in the midst of a severe psychotic episode and he immediately put me on invega. After about 9 months it finally started to really work. It worked pretty quickly, within about 3-4 months to take away some really frightening “hallucinations” but took away most, if not all of them in a longer period of time.

I guess you could say since treatment my life has improved, but the diagnosis didn’t make too much difference.