Home Page Science Frontiers
ONLINE

No. 25: Jan-Feb 1983

Issue Contents





Other pages


Other Interesting Sites


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 

 

Schizophrenia And Season Of Birth

Several scientists have published data that suggest that schizophrenics are more likely to be born in the winter months. The data have been subjected to much criticism. In this paper, the authors were careful to avoid previous errors in data collecting and analysis. From the Abstract:

"We studied the birth months of 3,556 schizophrenics at a Minnesota Veteran's Administration hospital before and after instituting corrections for year-to-year across-month variations in birthrates in our expected values and the age-prevalence bias toward the January-March seasonality effect described in some earlier studies. Finally, we reanalyzed our data on a subset of patients in whom the ageincidence effect should be minimal. Even after these corrections the results supported the contention that the winter birthrate for schizophrenics is excessive, at least in severe climates."

(Watson, Charles G., et al; "Season of Birth and Schizophrenia: A Response to the Lewis and Griffin Critique," Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 91:120, 1982.)

Comment. What could possibly cause this seasonal effect, assuming it withstands scrutiny?

From Science Frontiers #25, JAN-FEB 1983. 1983-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:

Quotes

  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987