Schizo-affective disorder symptoms vary from person to person. People who have the condition experience psychotic symptoms such as hallucinations or delusions as well as either bipolar disorder or depression. Psychotic symptoms and mood disturbances may happen at the same time or on and off. There are usually cycles of severe symptoms followed by a period of improvement, with less severe symptoms.

Patients experience delusions, hallucinations, major depression, manic moods or sudden increases in energy and acting out of character, trouble at work or functioning socially, problems with cleanliness and physical appearance, or paranoid thoughts. The major depression or mania occurs along with schizophrenia; delusions or hallucinations last at least two weeks, even when mood disorder symptoms are under control; or there is a mood disorder for the majority of time over the entire course of the schizophrenic illness.