Urban regions

What is incidence and how is it relevant to schizophrenia?

The incidence of schizophrenia refers to how many new cases there are per population in a specified time period. It is different from prevalence, which refers to how many existing cases there are at a particular point in time. Incidence is usually reported as the number of new cases per 100,000 people per year and can give clues into the causes of schizophrenia

Urbanicity is usually defined by degrees of population density, either as population per square mile or kilometre or as the number of inhabitants within a defined location (e.g., capital, city, or town). It is not clear whether urban living itself is associated with a higher risk for schizophrenia, as other factors may influence this association such as social class and access to treatment. Exposure to urbanicity may be assessed at birth, during upbringing or at illness onset.

What is the evidence on the incidence of schizophrenia in urban populations?

Moderate to high quality evidence finds the incidence rate of schizophrenia is higher in urban regions than in rural areas.

August 2020

Last updated at: 2:29 am, 24th August 2020
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