Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Estrogen Relieves Psychotic Symptoms In Women With Schizophrenia

Date:
August 5, 2008
Source:
JAMA and Archives Journals
Summary:
When combined with antipsychotic medications, the estrogen estradiol appears to be a useful treatment in women with schizophrenia, according to a new report.

When combined with antipsychotic medications, the estrogen estradiol appears to be a useful treatment in women with schizophrenia, according to a new report.

The link between estrogen and mental illness was recognized more than a century ago, according to background information in the article. However, scientific evidence regarding estrogen as a therapy for mental illness has only recently emerged. "Epidemiologic observations of sex differences in the onset and course of schizophrenia prompted exploration of estrogen's role in schizophrenia," the authors write.

Jayashri Kulkarni, M.B.B.S., M.P.M., F.R.A.N.Z.C.P., Ph.D., of The Alfred and Monash University and The Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, Australia, and colleagues conducted a randomized, double-blind study involving 102 women of child-bearing age with schizophrenia. For 28 days, 56 women were randomly assigned to receive 100 micrograms of estradiol daily via a skin patch and 46 women received a placebo skin patch in addition to their regular medications. Psychotic symptoms, which include delusions and hallucinatory behavior, were assessed weekly with a commonly used scale.

The group of women taking estradiol exhibited a greater improvement in psychotic symptoms over time than did the women taking antipsychotic medications alone. They also experienced a decline in positive symptoms—those which represent a distortion of normal functions. No difference was observed between the two groups regarding negative symptoms, those which occur when normal functions are lost or diminished.

"Estrogen's neuroprotective and psychoprotective actions may be mediated by a variety of routes, ranging from rapid actions, including antioxidant effects and enhancement of cerebral blood flow and cerebral glucose utilization, to slower, genomic mechanisms, which may include permanent modification of neural circuits," the authors write. "The lack of effect for negative symptoms is consistent with literature reporting that negative symptoms are less responsive to treatment than other symptoms of schizophrenia. It is possible that longer-term treatment is required for negative symptoms to respond to treatment. Alternatively, brain regions implicated in negative symptoms may be less responsive to gonadal hormone effects."

Estrogen may have a preventive role in women with schizophrenia who undergo hormonal changes shown to cause a deterioration of their condition, such as those following childbirth and menopause, the authors note. "Estrogen treatment is a promising new area for future treatment of schizophrenia and potentially for other severe mental illnesses," they conclude.

This study was supported by the Stanley Medical Research Institute and the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia. Co-author Dr. Fitzgerald is supported by a National Health and Medical Research Council Practitioner Fellowship and NARSAD Young Investigator award.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by JAMA and Archives Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Jayashri Kulkarni; Anthony de Castella; Paul B. Fitzgerald; Caroline T. Gurvich; Michael Bailey; Cali Bartholomeusz; Henry Burger. Estrogen in Severe Mental Illness: A Potential New Treatment Approach. Arch Gen Psychiatry, 2008;65(8):955-960

Cite This Page:

JAMA and Archives Journals. "Estrogen Relieves Psychotic Symptoms In Women With Schizophrenia." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 August 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080804165320.htm>.
JAMA and Archives Journals. (2008, August 5). Estrogen Relieves Psychotic Symptoms In Women With Schizophrenia. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080804165320.htm
JAMA and Archives Journals. "Estrogen Relieves Psychotic Symptoms In Women With Schizophrenia." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080804165320.htm (accessed April 23, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Study Says Most Crime Not Linked To Mental Illness

Study Says Most Crime Not Linked To Mental Illness

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) A new study finds most crimes committed by people with mental illness are not caused by symptoms of their illness or disorder. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) NBC's "Today" conducted an experiment to see if changing the size of plates and utensils affects the amount individuals eat. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do We Get Nicer With Age?

Do We Get Nicer With Age?

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) A recent report claims personality can change over time as we age, and usually that means becoming nicer and more emotionally stable. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How to Master Motherhood With the Best Work/Life Balance

How to Master Motherhood With the Best Work/Life Balance

TheStreet (Apr. 22, 2014) In the U.S., there are more than 11 million couples trying to conceive at any given time. From helping celebrity moms like Bethanny Frankel to ordinary soon-to-be-moms, TV personality and parenting expert, Rosie Pope, gives you the inside scoop on mastering motherhood. London-born entrepreneur Pope is the creative force behind Rosie Pope Maternity and MomPrep. She explains why being an entrepreneur offers the best life balance for her and tips for all types of moms. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins