Schizoaffective vs Schizophrenia

Is schizoaffective disorder a mild form of schizophrenia? Can schizoaffective evolve into schizophrenia? I know labels always change and it’s the treatment that matters, but I’m curious. When I was 13 I was diagnosed with schizoaffective. Then when I was 26 I was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. I haven’t experienced depression in four years, but instead have been living in psychosis totally submerged in a world of hallucinations and delusions. Also can depression occur with schizophrenia and not be called schizoaffective. Just curious. Thanks for reading. :sunny:

I don’t know. My doctor told me the prognosis for schizoaffective is better than that for schizophrenia. Does that help?

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Yeah I’ve heard that too, but is it milder as in what the person experiences?. :sunny:

Schizoaffective Disorder

The biggest change to schizoaffective disorder is that a major mood episode must be present for a majority of the time the disorder has been present in the person.

Ie a mood episode needs to be present over 50% of the time. Anything less than that and the diagnosis would be schizophrenia, with a mood component being noted.


Thanks firemonkey that helps. :sunny:

Usually the psychosis is milder than schizophrenia, and the prognosis is better, usually. Not always though. With schizoaffective there is a strong mood component, either depression, manic, or mixed. You can have depression with a diagnosis of schizophrenia, but the depression is not as frequent or strong

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My diagnosis keeps changing, so I don’t know what it is anymore. Last I knew it was schizoaffective disorder but they seem pretty sure I’m getting better besides moments of paranoia and occasionally hearing voices.

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I think of schizoaffective as slightly more intense or severe than bipolar disorder and also on a spectrum. With paranoid schizophrenia, your paranoia can be managed as well. I don’t know how often people with paranoid schizophrenia are paranoid. I have had paranoia as a subtype or symptom of the illness. I have bipolar type, not paranoid type anymore. Or maybe both. I don’t really care though. It’s better not to obsess about it because the two disorders are very similar and there has been mainstreams discussion about how both bipolar itself and schizophrenia on its own are blurred or similarly linked.

Honestly, so far I haven’t come up against severe stigma so I am OK with having a label of schizoaffective vs. bipolar. I actually would rather just call it schizophrenia because the term schizoaffective is 3 years new to me. I was downgraded from a more intense label to a less severe one due to my progress. But I have been going back and forth a lot about medication, and the doctors see that as poor management, it’s not that I have low insight. I have very high insight, it may be that I’m simply in denial of my illness at times because I grow tired of it.

That’s to be expected though. I go through bouts of denial because I want a way out. I want to wake up one day without worrying about this stuff anymore. I’ve come up with theories of the cause both personal and massive, but none of the theories are concrete enough to be certain.

I think scientific community needs to be more involved in the psychiatric community, by adding neurological research and new ideas about vitamins and brain biology. I know there are many solutions beyond a pill that masks behavior and internal symptoms. While it may be a short-term psychological benefit. The current psychotropic medications are not the be all and end all and they do not cure us.

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I only rarely hear voices. I see things and have delusions. You don’t have to hear voices to have schizophrenia. :sunny: