Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Siblings of children with schizophrenia show resilience to the condition as they grow up

Fundamental differences between how the brain forms during adolescence have been discovered in children with schizophrenia and their siblings, a new study shows. The study opens up new avenues for researchers to explore when developing treatment for the illness, which can be hugely debilitating for children.

Researchers from the University of Melbourne and the National Institute of Mental Health in Washington DC used structural brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to map the brains of 109 children with childhood-onset schizophrenia (COS), from ages 12 to 24.

They compared the images with scans taken of the participants’ brothers and sisters without COS to see if similar brain changes took place over time.

The siblings without COS showed similar delays in brain connectivity while growing up, but these connections tended to normalise or ‘catch up’ to those of normally developing adolescents.

Read the full story here:

Interesting to think that our siblings may have been en route to schizophrenia too, but then developed a detour mechanism of some kind. Nature is strange.

This study is a huge relief to me and gives me much hope for my youngest sibling.

It won’t be popular with some here, but the facts are just the facts whether we like them or not. Birth timing, stress on parents, including financial and marriage problems, etc., can combine to compel one particular child to become the “duty victim” of the parents’ need to vent. I am not saying this is universal, but I have seen it so many times now that I think it must be pretty common. Most of the children of similar age to the sz child are affected, but not to the same extent of observable severity.

I didn’t have early onset, but my mom used to tell me horrible things about her life since I was five or six. She said stuff you should never tell any child, especially not to one so young. That’s why I have to get out of here.