10-Year trends in the treatment and outcomes of patients with first-episode schizophrenia

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  • Aalborg Psykiatriske Sygehus
  • Centre for Psychiatric Research
  • The Department of General Psychiatry
  • Bioinformatics Research Centre (BiRC)
Nielsen J, le Quach P, Emborg C, Foldager L, Correll CU. 10-Year trends in the treatment and outcomes of patients with first-episode schizophrenia. Objective: The first episode of schizophrenia is a critical period for illness course and outcomes. We aimed to investigate treatments and outcomes during the first year after the diagnosis of schizophrenia. Method: Pharmacoepidemiologic inception cohort study of all newly diagnosed patients with schizophrenia in Denmark (n = 13 600) 1996-2005. Results: From 1996 to 2005, the mean age at first diagnosis decreased significantly (29.2-26.1 years), more patients received antipsychotics (67.2-80.7%, annual OR = 1.07, CI: 1.06-1.09, P < 0.001) and antipsychotic polypharmacy for >4 months (16.7-37.1%, OR = 1.14, CI: 1.12-1.57, P < 0.001). The antipsychotic defined daily dosage (DDD) doubled (150-332 DDD, P < 0.001), use of antidepressants (24.3-40.6%, P < 0.001). Bed days [89.9 days (CI: 81.8-98.8) to 71.8 days, CI: 63.7-80.8, P < 0.0001] decreased, whereas outpatient contacts [10.2 (CI: 9.5-11.0) to 21.4 (CI: 19.9-21.0), P < 0.0001] doubled. Conclusion: Between 1996 and 2005, there was an earlier recognition of schizophrenia, intensified outpatient treatment, increased use and dosing of antipsychotics and antidepressants, but also more antipsychotic polypharmacy.
Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Psychiatrica Scandinavica
Pages (from-to)356-66
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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