Article

Apathy, poor verbal memory and male gender predict lower psychosocial functioning one year after the first treatment of psychosis.

Oslo University Hospital, Ulleval, 0407 Oslo, Norway. Electronic address: .
Psychiatry research 03/2013; DOI: 10.1016/j.psychres.2013.02.007
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT BACKGROUND: Apathy is a negative symptom associated with poor psychosocial functioning in schizophrenia but has not been sufficiently studied as predictor of poor functioning in first episode psychosis (FEP). OBJECTIVE: The main aim of the current study was to evaluate if apathy predicts poor functioning after 1 year in FEP patients in the context of other clinical variables with influence on outcome. METHOD: Sixty-four FEP patients completed an extensive clinical and neuro-psychological test battery at baseline and 1-year follow-up. Symptoms were assessed with the Positive and Negative Syndrome scale (PANSS), apathy with the shortened Apathy Evaluation Scale (AES-C-12) and psychosocial functioning with the functioning score from the split version of the Global Assessment of Functioning scale (GAF-F). RESULTS: High levels of apathy, poor verbal memory and being male were the baseline variables that best predicted poor functioning at 1-year follow-up, explaining 34% of the variance in GAF-F. When PANSS negative factor was included in the analysis, the significance of AES-C-12 diminished. CONCLUSION: These findings points to a robust role for apathy among the negative symptoms in the development of persisting psychosocial dysfunction in FEP and supports the current effort in targeting motivation to improve functioning.

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    ABSTRACT: Apathy in schizophrenia patients is linked to marked functional impairments and can be defined as a quantitative reduction of voluntary, goal-directed behaviors. If there are now convincing arguments to consider apathy as a multidimensional psychopathological state (cognitive, emotional, and behavioral), there is a lack of validated and standardized instruments for detecting apathy and assessing its multidimensional aspects in schizophrenia. The Lille Apathy Rating Scale (LARS) is a semi-structured interview, yielding a global score and composite subscores for the different domains of apathy and has been validated in several different contexts but not in schizophrenia patients. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study is to examine the psychometric properties of the LARS and identify the distinct components of apathy in a sample of schizophrenia patients. METHODS: One hundred-and-twelve schizophrenia patients were included and they completed the LARS, The Calgary Depression Scale in Schizophrenia, the Positive and the Negative Syndrome Scale and the Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptoms. The patient group was compared to 51 healthy control subjects. RESULTS: Principal component analysis showed that the LARS proved a single construct which forms the root of an oblique factor structure reflecting four dimensions: novelty and social life, behavioral involvement, emotional involvement, and judgment skills. The main psychometric properties of the LARS were satisfactory. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings show that the LARS has satisfactory psychometric properties when used in a different setting than the original version. The LARS is a promising instrument to examine apathy in schizophrenia through a multidimensional framework.
    Schizophrenia Research 05/2014; · 4.43 Impact Factor
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  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Apathy in schizophrenia patients is linked to marked functional impairments and can be defined as a quantitative reduction of voluntary, goal-directed behaviors. If there are now convincing arguments to consider apathy as a multidimensional psychopathological state (cognitive, emotional, and behavioral), there is a lack of validated and standardized instruments for detecting apathy and assessing its multidimensional aspects in schizophrenia. The Lille Apathy Rating Scale (LARS) is a semi-structured interview, yielding a global score and composite subscores for the different domains of apathy and has been validated in several different contexts but not in schizophrenia patients.
    Schizophrenia Research 05/2014; · 4.43 Impact Factor

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