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Correlation between diagnosed schizophrenics and siblings

People who have physical injuries or conditions are not the only ones who may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. Workers who are afflicted with mental disorders, such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, may also be eligible for benefits. While many people know that these mental conditions are hereditary, research shows that people who have a sibling with the mental disorder have a significantly higher chance of being diagnosed with schizophrenia as well.

The study evaluated 6,000 patients who had bipolar disorder, schizophrenia or depression. After comparing the patients with more than 75,000 healthy people, researchers found a correlation between the patients with mental disorders and their siblings. In fact, that chance that a person may be diagnosed with schizophrenia is increased by 10 times if they have a sister or brother who has already been diagnosed with the disease. Furthermore, people who have a sibling with bipolar disorder are 20 times more likely to be diagnosed with the disorder as well. 

Schizophrenia places extreme limits on what a person can do at work, as well as what they can accomplish in his or her personal life. The mental disability may cause people to hear inner voices and experience disorganized thinking. People may have serious delusions or believe that someone is out to hurt them. It may be difficult for people with schizophrenia to find a place of employment where they can contribute in a healthy environment.

When people find that they are afflicted with a significantly debilitating mental disorder and cannot continue to work, they may want to contact an attorney regarding their options. In some cases, they may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance that could help them make ends meet.

Source: Newsweek, “If siblings have schizophrenia, risk factor increases,” Kelsey Drain, Sept. 25, 2016.


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