Gesture Behavior in Unmedicated Schizotypal Adolescents

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Schizotypal personality disorder is characterized by interpersonal and verbal communication deficits. Despite the important role of gesture in social communication, no published reports examine the use of gesture by individuals with SPD. In this study, raters code gesture from videotaped interviews of unmedicated adolescents with SPD, other personality disorders, or no Axis II disorder. Results indicate that SPD adolescents show significantly fewer gestures but do not differ from the other groups in overall rate of movement. The findings are discussed in light of brain regions involved in dysfunction, parallels to schizophrenia, and treatment implications.

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