A new study has found individual’s with autoimmune disorders, a collection of diseases where the body’s immune system attacks its own cells, are more likely to have psychosis.

The study (link below) focused on autoimmune disorders that affect the peripheral system, such as type 1 diabetes, as the researchers were particularly interested in whether autoimmune disorders that target the body, as opposed to the brain, could still influence the development of psychosis. The central analysis, combined data from all non-neurological autoimmune disorders, except for rheumatoid arthritis (given the well-established negative association reported with psychosis) and found that, overall, people with any autoimmune disorder were 40% more likely to have a psychotic disorder, such as schizophrenia. The secondary analysis, examined individual autoimmune disorders. The research found the likelihood of having psychosis was higher for pernicious anaemia, pemphigoid (a disease characterized by skin blisters), psoriasis, coeliac disease and Graves’ disease.

The ConversationSo what is the real-world application of these findings?

Link to research: https://www.biologicalpsychiatryjournal.com/article/S0006-3223(18)31630-5/fulltext