Due to the dynamic development of molecular genetics it can be expected that genes involved in the etiology of many mental disorders will be known in the near future. Therefore, it will be possible to carry out predictive genetic tests. The purpose of the study was to analyze respondents' opinions on problems related to the possibility of predictive genetic testing application in psychiatry. Participants in this study (N = 394) were 63 psychiatrists, 79 patients, 195 students and 57 teachers. Items of the questionnaire: "Ethical problems related to genetic examinations" used in the study were concerned with genetics and psychiatry. Patients, as compared to psychiatrists, significantly more often displayed a positive attitude towards genetic predictive testing in the form of obligatory examinations, examination of minors, and prenatal tests.
The Rorschach method was used to assess 75 patients with paranoid or simple schizophrenia and 63 healthy persons. The two groups were compared in terms of frequency of the so-called "particular signs": fragmentation of precepts (Frgm), describing their size (size), emotional judgments (EmJ), and inductive reasoning (IndP). Schizophrenic patients significantly more often produced responses with expressed fragmentation of percepts; moreover, their responses were markedly more "dramatic" or drastic. These findings were interpreted as a manifestation of personality disintegration processes. The remaining "signs" did not differentiate between the experimental and control group, and their co-incidence with mental health or illness was often dependent on the plate of the test in response to which they had been produced, as well as on the respondent's sex. It seems especially interesting that the remaining three "signs" were sometimes associated with health rather than illness. In the literature on the Rorschach test the presence of all the jour "particular signs" is considered to be associated with pathology. Thus, not only a revision of views concerning such "signs" as "size", "EmJ" and "IndP" seems necessary, but also further more detailed research in this area.
Responses to the Rorschach test plates obtained from 75 patients with paranoid or simple schizophrenia were analysed in terms of the presence of a certain type of absurd utterances and of content related to covering, shading, or something missing. Results of the analysis were compared to the material obtained from 63 healthy controls assessed using the Rorschach test. "Absurd" responses were significantly more frequent in the group of patients, which was interpreted as indicating their psychical dissolution. Responses, in which covers or covering of a part of a blat by another figure had been mentioned when describing Plates II and IV, turned out to be significantly more frequent among the patients. A twofold explanation of the finding was proposed: the result was either due to psychopathology, or to the patients' higher sensitivity to boundaries of human cognition. "Shading responses" as well as those with "something missing" were rather rare in the material studied and did not differentiate between the two groups. Interpretation of the findings on the grounds of assumptions of hermeneutics is considered as a proposal open to further cognitive processing. The study dealt with material difficult to analyze objectively. Besides, the analysis included not only "absurd" utterances, but also some content aspects not reported in the literature so far – therefore the research should be regarded in a sense as a pilot study only.
The aim of study was to assess the ability to recognize affective prosody in sub-chronic and chronic schizophrenic patients as well as in healthy controls using two prosody measures: a Voiced Emotion Identification Task (judgement of positive and negative intonation of semantically neutral sentences) and Voiced Emotion Discrimination Task (discrimination of sentences containing either the same or different emotional intonation). Alt the participants were right-handers. Schizophrenic patients took part in the study after a four-week neuroleptic treatment. The structure and severity of schizophrenic symptomatology were assessed using the PANSS scale. Schizophrenic patients as compared to healthy controls were significantly impaired as regards perception of prosody (emotional intonation). Emotionally neutral intonation was perceived significantly better than either of the "emotional" categories. The least accurate perception was found as regards the emotion of "repulsion". Females turned out to perceive emotional tone of voice more accurately than did males. The emotional prosody deficit revealed its stable character, although it became more pronounced with the schizophrenic process duration.
A study of visual evoked potentials (VEP) was carried out on a group of 30 patients (8 males and 22 females) with a DSM-III-R diagnosis of schizophrenia: disorganized (5 cases), paranoid (12), residual (6), or undifferentiated schizophrenia (6 cases). During the study 20 patients were treated with neuroleptics, while 10 patients received no psychotropic medication. A control group consisted of 50 healthy persons (25 males and 25 females). A full chessboard stimulation was applied. Differences between evoked potentials from electrodes located on the top of the head and in EEG points O1 and O2 were registered. Symmetry of registered VEPs and their amplitudes were assessed and compared with these obtained from healthy controls. Differences in mean amplitudes of P1, P100 and N2 were found. The mean amplitudes o Pl and N2 were higher in the group of schizophrenic patients, while the mean Pl00 amplitude was higher in the control group. The amplitude differences were symmetrical and pertained both to left-and right-sided VEPs. As regards N1 and P300 amplitudes, the differences in their distribution were statistically insignificant. Standard deviations of amplitudes in the group of schizophrenic patients were much higher than these in the control group, which indicates a much more marked inter-individual VEP variability in patients diagnosed with schizophrenia.
Acquisition of health-related problem solving skills was compared in two groups of patients, participating either in (l) a symptom self-management training, or in (2) psychoeducation (a discussion group). In the sample under study the symptom self-management training turned out to be more effective than psychoeducation. Moreover, the level of knowledge acquisition was only slightly related to psychopathological symptoms severity in both groups, both at baseline and on the training completion.
Contemporary experience and views concerning dopamine agonists' application in the treatment of Parkinson's disease are presented in the paper. Particular medications, mechanisms of their action, as well as their advantages and disadvantages are discussed, and their effectiveness and safety are compared. Finally, basic recommendations for these drugs administration are proposed, with the emphasis on individual circumstances that have to be taken into account in each case. (Ed.)
The paper presents letters sent by Jan Mazurkiewicz to Witold Chodźko in the years 1904-1946. They are a testimony of their friendship, which had a profound effect also on their professional activity. Their work was of outstanding importance for the development of Polish psychiatry in the first half of XXth century.