The effect of alcohol and cannabis on quality of life and functioning in first episode psychosis patients

Bursey, Krystal K. (2022) The effect of alcohol and cannabis on quality of life and functioning in first episode psychosis patients. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Schizophrenia is one of the leading causes of disability worldwide. New early intervention programs have shown some success in managing initial symptoms and improving the course of illness by beginning treatment during the first psychotic episode. Although these programs are a step forward towards recovery for people with schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders, in order for patients to attain a good quality of life, research needs to identify barriers that negatively interfere with symptom remission and illness management. Substance misuse has been identified in the literature as a prevalent issue within first episode psychosis patients and has been shown to negatively affect clinical outcomes; however, little is known about its impact on quality of life and functioning. This study aimed to address this gap in knowledge by examining the impact of course of substance misuse on quality of life, symptomatology, and global functioning over a 24-month period. A hundred and eighty-nine participants were categorized into one of three course of substance misuse groups: continued misuse, discontinued misuse and no misuse. No significant differences were observed between course of cannabis misuse groups (continued misuse, discontinued misuse or no misuse) over 24-months on any outcome variable; however, there was a significant course of alcohol misuse group difference on the positive symptoms outcome. It was found that those who continued misuse of alcohol had more positive symptoms than those who never misused alcohol or those who discontinued misuse of alcohol. These results indicate that alcohol misuse does impact clinical outcomes among first episode psychosis patients and that more research is needed to understand the full impact of substance misuse on this population.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 15578
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (pages 50-61)
Keywords: psychosis, substance misuse, quality of life, first episode psychosis, schizophrenia
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Psychology
Science, Faculty of > Psychology
Date: 2022
Date Type: Submission
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Schizophrenia; Psychoses; Substance abuse; Drug abuse; Quality of life; Alcohol—Physiological effect; Cannabis—Physiological effect

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