Baseline differences in clinical symptomatology between ultra high risk subjects with and without a transition to psychosis

Eva Velthorst, Dorien H. Nieman, Hiske E. Becker, Reinaud van de Fliert, Peter M. Dingemans, Rianne Klaassen, Lieuwe de Haan, Thérèse van Amelsvoort, Don H. Linszen

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170 Scopus citations


Background: The chance of transition to psychosis in patients at Ultra High Risk for developing psychosis (UHR) is 10-15%. The aim of present study was to investigate differences in baseline clinical symptomatology, general level of functioning (GAF-score) and genetic risk between UHR patients who did (UHR + T) or did not (UHR + NT) make a transition to psychosis. Sharpening UHR inclusion criteria may aid in improving prediction of transition to psychosis. Method: The study sample was taken from 285 patients who were examined within the Dutch Prediction of Psychosis Study (DUPS) at the Academic Medical Center of the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Out of 73 included UHR subjects, 18 made a transition to psychosis. Psychopathology was investigated with the Structured Interview for Prodromal Syndromes, Bonn Scale for the Assessment of Basic Symptoms and GAF-score. The follow-up period of the study was three years. Results: The UHR + T group showed more social anhedonia and withdrawal, more bizarre thinking and a lower GAF score at baseline than the UHR + NT group. Conclusions: In agreement with the results of Cannon et al. [Cannon, T.D., Cadenhead, K., Cornblatt, B., Woods, S.W., Addington, J., Walker, E., Seidman, L.J., Perkins, D., Tsuang, M., McGlashan, T., Heinssen, R., 2008. Prediction of Psychosis in Youth at High Clinical Risk: A Multisite Longitudinal Study in North America. Arch. Gen. Psychiat. 65 (1) 28-37.], our study indicates that severity of specific symptoms at baseline is related to transition to psychosis in UHR subjects. These findings may contribute to a more accurate prediction of a first psychotic episode. Furthermore, symptoms that are increased at baseline in the UHR + T group could be a focus of cognitive behavioural therapy in the UHR period.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-65
Number of pages6
JournalSchizophrenia Research
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Apr 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Basic symptoms
  • GAF-score
  • Prediction of psychosis
  • Psychosis
  • Social withdrawal
  • Ultra high risk symptoms


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