May 12, 2004

Lack of Empathy

Read more... Schizophrenia Biology

Lack of Empathy Part of Schizophrenia (BBC News)

It is not only autistic people who have a reduced ability to empathise with others - it also happens in conditions such as schizophrenia and depression.

And Dr Michael Isaac, of Lewisham University Hospital in London, said that empathy was something that could be learned to an extent in some people who exhibit autistic-like behaviour.

While this news report is focused on Autism - many of the same issues relating to lack of Empathy are common to people with schizophrenia - and so it is likely that the approach to improving empathy in autistic people would also work for those who have schizophrenia.

Having empathy for other people is a much more simple and basic emotion than thought, scientists have found.

Experiments by scientists at the The Netherland's University of Groningen have shown that developing empathy is just a matter of learning which emotions go with certain events.

The brain then becomes conditioned to trigger the same response when those events involve other people.


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