Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with schizophrenia

J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2013 Sep;52(9):976-90. doi: 10.1016/j.jaac.2013.02.008.


This Practice Parameter reviews the literature on the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with schizophrenia. Early-onset schizophrenia is diagnosed using the same criteria as in adults and appears to be continuous with the adult form of the disorder. Clinical standards suggest that effective treatment includes antipsychotic medications combined with psychoeducational, psychotherapeutic, and educational interventions. Since this Practice Parameter was last published in 2001, several controlled trials of atypical antipsychotic agents for early-onset schizophrenia have been conducted. However, studies suggest that many youth with early-onset schizophrenia do not respond adequately to available agents and are vulnerable to adverse events, particularly metabolic side effects. Further research is needed to develop more effective and safer treatments.

Keywords: psychosis; schizophrenia.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Antipsychotic Agents / adverse effects
  • Antipsychotic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Child
  • Early Diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Patient Education as Topic
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'*
  • Psychotherapy
  • Schizophrenia / diagnosis*
  • Schizophrenia / therapy*
  • Schizophrenic Psychology*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • United States


  • Antipsychotic Agents