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Schizophr Bull. 2009 Mar;35(2):362-9. doi: 10.1093/schbul/sbn143. Epub 2008 Nov 5.

Clinical recovery in first-episode psychosis.

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  • 1University Medical Center Groningen, University Psychiatric Center (5.21), University of Groningen, 9700 RB Groningen, The Netherlands.



Generally agreed outcome criteria in psychosis are required to evaluate the effectiveness of new treatment strategies. The aim of this study is to explore clinical recovery in first-episode patients, defined by meeting criteria for both symptomatic and functional remission.


In a sample of first-episode patients (N = 125), symptomatic and functional remission during the last 9 months of a 2-year follow-up period were examined, as well as recovery and its predictors.


Half the patients (52.0%) showed symptomatic remission and a quarter (26.4%) functional remission, while one-fifth (19.2%) met both criteria sets and were considered recovered. Recovery was significantly associated with short duration of untreated psychosis and better baseline functioning.


Most functionally remitted patients were also symptomatically remitted, while a minority of symptomatically remitted patients were also functionally remitted. Treatment delay may affect chance of recovery.

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