Communication Deviance in Families of Schizophrenic and Manic Patients

David J. Miklowitz, Dawn I. Velligan, Michael J. Goldstein, Keith H. Nuechterlein, Michael J. Gitlin, Gregory Ranlett, Jeri A. Doane

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Levels of communication deviance (CD) distinguish parents of schizophrenic patients from parents of nonpsychotic patients, but the prevalence of intrafamilial CD in other psychotic disorders has not been examined. Levels of CD were compared across biological parents of schizophrenic (n = 39) and bipolar manic (n = 16) patients and across patients themselves. CD ratings were based on Thematic Apperception Test protocols (parents only) and family interactions (parents and patients). Total levels of CD did not distinguish between groups of parents or patients. However, instances of odd word usage were more frequent among parents of manic patients than among parents of schizophrenic patients on both CD measures. Also, during the interaction task, odd word usage was more frequent among manic patients, whereas schizophrenic patients made more ambiguous references. Results suggest that high levels of intrafamilial CD are not unique to schizophrenia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-173
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Abnormal Psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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