Background. Dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system (ANS) in schizophrenia has been detected by electrophysiological methods, but the underlying mechanisms remain unknown. Several studies have suggested that measuring salivary alpha-amylase activity levels is useful for evaluating the ANS activity and that sAA levels increase in schizophrenia and correlate with Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS) scores.However, no study has examined the relationship between sAA activity levels and symptoms of schizophrenia with catatonic state.
Methods.We present the case of a 59-year-old female with persistent catatonic schizophrenia treated by electroconvulsive therapy.We evaluated the ANS activity by measuring sAA activity levels before and after ECT, and we evaluated her symptoms using the BPRS and Bush–Francis Catatonia Rating Scale (BFCRS).
Results. ECT was highly effective and BPRS and BFCRS scores substantially decreased. sAA activity levels decreased from 125 kU/l to 33 kU/l.
Conclusions. sAA activity levels could be a potential biomarker of schizophrenia with catatonic state.
Case Reports in Psychiatry