Etiology of Endogenous Psychoses

  • Karl Leonhard
  • Helmut Beckmann


In spite of very intensive efforts made for decades with regard to elucidating the genesis of endogenous psychoses, very little is known. It is known that hereditary disposition plays a role; it is assumed that psychosocial factors are significant. But it is not known what the nature of the hereditary disposition is, nor which kinds of psychosocial factors are involved. This gross deficiency is, in my opinion, derived from the fact that since Kraepeiin’s days etiological investigations have been carried out on only one schizophrenia and only one manic-depressive disorder (in the broad sense of the term). The separation at last of manic-depressive illness from monopolar depression has held good; whereas the “schizoaffective psychoses” now frequently mentioned have not led to any useful separation, as these include schizophrenic as well as phasic, especially cycloid psychoses. I have had the opportunity in recent years to spend much time conducting investigations and research, with the result that much more is now known than previously.


Monozygotic Twin Young Sibling Dizygotic Twin Affected Sibling Healthy Parent 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karl Leonhard
    • 1
  • Helmut Beckmann
    • 2
  1. 1.BerlinGermany
  2. 2.Psychiatrische Klinik und PoliklinikUniversitäts-NervenklinikWürzburgDeutschland

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