Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Mother-in-Law has Schizophrenia. Will she be like this forever? Or is there anything else we can do?

I received this by email - wanted to post it here for feedback and suggestions from the community:


Hello, my mother in law has severe schizophrenia .

She seems to be in a routine where she has a good day, followed by two bad days, back to the good day and so forth. But even on the good day she does not function right, can not speak but mumbles, makes noises, drops food out of her mouth while trying to eat, and bites at the air.

On bad days it’s a lot worse and often she is completely incoherent. She will repeat processes over and over, such as walk from one corner of the house the the other stopping before the corner to turn around and back into the corner and then head to the opisite corner to do the same, half way there she will drop to the ground (in the same spot each time) curl into a ball, wait 2 seconds, then get up and continue to the corner to repeat the process.

But often she just lays on the ground and hums, other times she crawls under the coffee table and then crawls out walks around the room and then crawls back under it and repeats.

She has been like this for about 4 years now and has been seen by the same provider, she goes to day care during the day but comes home to be watched at night. She has diabetes as well and her meds are as follows:

MIrtazapine 15mg
Rozerem 8mg
Nitrazepam 5mg
Crestor 2.5mg
Januvia 50mg
Carbamazepine 200mg
abilify 12mg

Will she be like this forever? Or is there anything else we can do?

A lot of the repetition sounds more like OCD than anything. Therapy helps with that.

1 Like

Yes - it sounds like she has some symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder. Here is more information about it: (click on the wikipedia link to get the full story below)

1 Like

You seem pretty educated. Here is a full document of how they treat schizophrenia in England. You might want to review it and see what else you can do:

Also - if your mother isn’t doing well - perhaps you can find another doctor who can help more?

Just wondering how old she is.
So she has been diagnosed with schizophrenia?

Mirtazapine 15mg – generic for Remeron in the US, an anti-depressant
Rozerem 8mg – for sleep
Nitrazepam 5mg – for sleep and anxiety (a benzodiazepine)
Crestor 2.5mg – for excessive serum cholesterol
Januvia 50mg – for diabetes
Carbamazepine 200mg – generic for Tegretol, very low dose of an anti-seizure med, possibly for mood-leveling
Abilify 12mg – modern, atypical anti-psychotic, fairly low dose

I would like to know how old she is, of course.
Has she ever had a stroke, any TIAs, or a severe head injury?
Did the diabetes show up before or after she went on anti-psychotics?
Does she hear voices? Have delusions? Act / talk paranoid?

I’m seeing a # of early onset dementia symptoms here, though not “classic” Alzheimer’s. Never a good idea to dx from this distance, however.

Because the onset of florid symptoms is so late in life, as well as because they are not “classic,” I have to wonder if this is sz, or if it’s a “transient” non-sz psychosis. Did her dx include the words “not otherwise specified?”

Well. I’d definitely get a copy of this book if you haven’t already. (See below.) As well as see if you can get her to a clinic that specializes in psychotic disorders of all types for an assessment.

1 Like