Timing, Distribution, and Relationship Between Nonpsychotic and Subthreshold Psychotic Symptoms Prior to Emergence of a First Episode of Psychosis.

TitleTiming, Distribution, and Relationship Between Nonpsychotic and Subthreshold Psychotic Symptoms Prior to Emergence of a First Episode of Psychosis.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsCupo L, McIlwaine SV, Daneault J-G, Malla A, Iyer SN, Joober R, Shah JL
JournalSchizophr Bull
Date Published2021 Jan 07
ISSN1745-1701
Abstract

Prospective population studies suggest that psychotic syndromes may be an emergent phenomenon-a function of severity and complexity of more common mental health presentations and their nonpsychotic symptoms. Examining the relationship between nonpsychotic and subthreshold psychotic symptoms in individuals who later developed the ultimate outcome of interest, a first episode of psychosis (FEP), could provide valuable data to support or refute this conceptualization of how psychosis develops. We therefore conducted a detailed follow-back study consisting of semistructured interviews with 430 patients and families supplemented by chart reviews in a catchment-based sample of affective and nonaffective FEP. The onset and sequence of 27 pre-onset nonpsychotic (NPS) or subthreshold psychotic (STPS) symptoms was systematically characterized. Differences in proportions were analyzed with z-tests, and correlations were assessed with negative binomial regressions. Both the first psychiatric symptom (86.24% NPS) and the first prodromal symptom (66.51% NPS) were more likely to be NPS than STPS. Patients reporting pre-onset STPS had proportionally more of each NPS than did those without pre-onset STPS. Finally, there was a strong positive correlation between NPS counts (reflecting complexity) and STPS counts (β = 0.34, 95% CI [0.31, 0.38], P < 2 e-16). Prior to a FEP, NPS precede STPS, and greater complexity of NPS is associated with the presence and frequency of STPS. These findings complement recent arguments that the emergence of psychotic illness is better conceptualized as part of a continuum-with implications for understanding pluripotential developmental trajectories and strengthening early intervention paradigms.

DOI10.1093/schbul/sbaa183
Alternate JournalSchizophr Bull
PubMed ID33410487