Symptomatic response to antipsychotics differs between recent onset and recurrent chronic schizophrenic patients

Christine Hill, Nicholas A. Keks, Henry Jackson, Jayashri Kulkarni, Deborah Hannah, David Copolov, Bruce Singh

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The symptomatic response to standard antipsychotic treatment was assessed over the first 4 weeks of hospitalisation in 39 patients with DSM-III schizophrenia, active phase, using the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS). While highly significant improvement was noted overall, 36% of patients either did not improve or worsened. Furthermore there was no diminution in the withdrawal-retardation factor of the BPRS. Patients experiencing their first admission to hospital, all with recent-onset illness, were then compared with patients who presented with a recurrence and had illness of at least 3 years duration. Despite similarities in overall response, withdrawal-retardation scores did not diminish in recent-onset patients, in contrast to multiple admissions who demonstrated significant improvement. These findings suggest greater responsiveness of negative symptoms to treatment in patients with longstanding illness, and possibly a poorer prognosis in first admission patients with deficit manifestations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-422
Number of pages6
JournalAustralasian Psychiatry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1992

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