What are the complications of paranoid schizophrenia?

The complications of paranoid schizophrenia are varied, and they can be quite severe. Because people with paranoid schizophrenia can't interpret reality correctly, many people end up jobless, which can lead to financial problems and even homelessness. In addition, the disorder is likely to create violent situations. People with paranoid schizophrenia may be violent toward others, frighten people into being violent toward them, or commit a violent crime because of delusions and hallucinations. They may cause harm to themselves or others due to frustrations and anger they feel. Because treatment can help prevent these complications, it's important to talk to a doctor if you or a loved one may have paranoid schizophrenia.

Douglas E. Severance, MD
Family Medicine
If paranoid schizophrenia is not treated, a person can end up with severe emotional and behavioral problems that can affect every part of his life. Such complications can include:

  • depression
  • alcohol and drug abuse 
  • self-destructive behavior
  • relationship problems
  • financial problems/poverty
  • abuse of prescription drugs
  • homelessness
  • illegal acts
  • inability to work or attend school
  • suicidal thoughts and behavior
  • involvement in violent crime
  • heart and lung disease from smoking

Talk to your doctor about other complications from paranoid schizophrenia.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.