January 22, 2005

Predicting the Course of SZ

A new study in Schizophrenia Research suggests that certain gender- and disease- related markers identified prior to diagnosis can help predict the future prognosis of those who develop schizophrenia.

The study obtained behavioral and intellectual functioning data from 996 adolescents with schizophrenia and 335 with affective disorders at least 1 year prior to a first hospitalization. Resesarchers continued to monitor the hospitalizations of these individuals.

Data revealed that males who had poor social functioning and organization skills before their diagnosis of schizophrenia spent more days in the hospital per year than other males with schizophrenia. Among the female subjects, those with higher intellectual measure before their first hospital admission spent fewer days in the hospital. Moreover, those women with higher intellectual functioning prior to diagnosis tended to have only one (as opposed to more than one) hospital admission.

Intellectual measures did not seem to be a predictive indicator for males, however.

The study concludes that: "overall...gender-specific and disease-specific premorbid deficits appear to have differential prognostic value for outcomes in schizophrenia and affective disorders."

Source: "Premorbid Deficits Predict Schizophrenia Prognosis" (Jan 20 2005). Available at http://www.psychiatrysource.com.

Click here to see the study abstract, or do a search at http://www.pubmed.com with the title "Association between functioning in adolescence prior to first admission for schizophrenia and affective disorders and patterns of hospitalizations thereafter."


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