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Tijdschrift voor Psychiatrie 39 (1997) 1, 24 - 36

Short report

Early intervention, social functioning, psychotic relapse and suicide of patients with recent onset schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders

L. de Haan, D.H. Linszen, R. Gorsira

133 young patients (mean age 20,3) with recent onset schizophrenic disorders received an early intervention program. This early intervention included a combination of (1) pharmacotherapy, (2) psychoeducation to patients and parents, (3) an individually oriented intervention with recognition of early prodromal signs and stress-management, (4) intensive support in the finding of structural activities, (5) parentgroups and (6) continuity of clinical and out-patient care of patients and parents. We measured the change in social functioning, psychotic relapse and suicide attempts and suicide during one year out-patient care.
67% of the patients who were inactive at admission had structured activities after one year out-patient care. 21,8% of the patients had a psychotic relapse in the year after admission. We divided the relapses in severe (13,5%) and mild (8,3%) relapses. A severe relapse was in most cases followed by readmission. Six patients made a suicide attempt, one patient completed suicide.
In this group of young patients with recent onset schizophrenic disorders, early intervention appears to improve the social functioning and to reduce psychotic relapse and probably suicide.