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Br J Psychiatry Suppl. 1998;172(33):77-83.

First-episode schizophrenia. Early intervention and medication discontinuation in the context of course and treatment.

Author information

1
NIMH Neuroscience Center, St Elizabeths, Washington, DC 20032, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The concept that early intervention with antipsychotic medications improves the long-term course of schizophrenia is discussed.

METHOD:

This report reviews the literature concerning early intervention with antipsychotic medications for people with first episodes, and how it affects long-term morbidity. It also studies the effects of discontinuing antipsychotic medications on relapse for people with first episodes.

RESULTS:

Early intervention with antipsychotic medications appears to decrease the long-term morbidity of schizophrenia.

CONCLUSIONS:

Early intervention with antipsychotic medications should be encouraged for people experiencing their first episode of schizophrenia. This report proposes that studying the various phases of subject response to treatment can be helpful in elucidating when antipsychotic medications should be tapered or withdrawn.

PMID:
9764131
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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