A personality disorder in which the individual has interpersonal deficits evidenced by acute discomfort with close relationships, eccentric behavior, and cognitive or perceptual distortions. In order to be considered a personality disorder these aspects must be 'pervasive' to the extent of interfering with normal social functioning, but still be less severe than in actual schizophrenia.

Under the DSM-IV, in order to be diagnosed with schizotypal personality disorder:

1. The individual must exhibit at least five of the following:

  • Ideas of reference (akin to delusions of reference, but not as strong).
  • Odd beliefs or magical thinking that influence behavior.
  • Behavior that is inconsistent with cultural norms. (superstitiousness, belief in the paranormal, etc.)
  • Unusual perceptual experiences, including bodily illusions.
  • Odd thinking and speech.
  • Suspiciousness or paranoid ideation.
  • Inappropriate or constricted affect.
  • Behavior or appearance that is odd, eccentric, or peculiar.
  • Lack of close friends or confidants other than close relatives.
  • Excessive social anxiety which does not diminish with familiarity and tends to be associated with paranoid fears rather than negative judgments about self.
People with this disorder may also feel depressed (mild depression, not necessarily severe depression), but this is not one of the diagnostic traits.

2. The person must exhibit these traits separate from any episodes of schizophrenia, any mood disorder with psychotic features, any other psychotic disorder, or any pervasive developmental disorder. If the person exhibits this disorder prior to the onset of schizophrenia, the disorder is labeled "Schizotypal Personality Disorder (Premorbid)".

3. These traits may not be the result of a drug or medication.

This is one of the more vague of the personality disorders, and the symptoms overlap with Schizophrenia, Schizoid Personality Disorder, Paranoid Personality Disorder, Avoidant Personality Disorder, Delusional Disorder, and many others. Also, these symptoms are often present to some degree in any 'normal' person.

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