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The European Journal of Psychiatry

Print version ISSN 0213-6163


REBGETZ, Shane et al. A prospective study of natural recovery from cannabis use in early psychosis. Eur. J. Psychiat. [online]. 2014, vol.28, n.4, pp.218-229. ISSN 0213-6163.

Background and Objectives: Cannabis use is common in early psychosis and has been linked to adverse outcomes. However, factors that influence and maintain change in cannabis use in this population are poorly understood. An existing prospective dataset was used to predict abstinence from cannabis use over the 6 months following inpatient admission for early psychosis. Methods: Participants were 67 inpatients with early psychosis who had used cannabis in the 6 weeks prior to admission. Current diagnoses of psychotic and substance use disorders were confirmed using a clinical checklist and structured diagnostic interview. Measures of clinical, substance use and social and occupational functioning were administered at baseline and at least fortnightly over the 6-month follow up. Results: No substance use or clinical variables were associated with 6-months’ of cannabis abstinence. Only Caucasian ethnicity, living in private accommodation and receiving an income before the admission were predictive. Only private accommodation and receiving an income were significant predictors of abstinence when these variables were entered into a multivariate analysis. Conclusions: While the observed relationships do not necessarily imply causation, they suggest that more optimal substance use outcomes could be achieved by addressing the accommodation and employment needs of patients.

Keywords : Psychosis; Substance use; Recovery.

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