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- Disorder characterized by symptoms of schizophrenia, with a total duration greater than one month but less than the six months required for a schizophrenia diagnosis
- Regarded by DSM-5 as a schizophrenia spectrum disorder
- When an individual has a new-onset psychosis, the course of illness and eventual diagnosis may be uncertain.
- Up to 20% may have a single psychotic episode without any subsequent episodes.
- When an episode lasts less than a month with a full return to baseline, the DSM categorizes this as a brief psychotic disorder.
- About 80% of cases are later diagnosed with schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder or an affective disorder.
- Thus, schizophreniform disorder is often a provisional diagnosis until longitudinal follow-up establishes a more specific diagnosis.
- Individuals who have a single psychotic episode fulfilling criteria for schizophreniform disorder have been found to present with more positive and affective symptoms, and to have better functioning 5 years later, compared to those diagnosed with schizophrenia.