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Title: Risk factors for violence in psychosis : meta-analysis and Cox regression analyses investigating the association of established and novel risk factors for violence
Author: Witt, Katrina Gisela
ISNI:       0000 0004 5354 5565
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2014
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Current treatment practice guidelines in a number of countries mandate the assessment of violence risk in all patients diagnosed with schizophrenia. Although more than 100 different instruments have been developed to facilitate the assessment of violence risk, few have been specifically validated for use in those with schizophrenia. Recent work instead suggests that these instruments are typically associated with lower predictive validity in samples with schizophrenia when compared to that achieved in diagnostically heterogeneous samples, leading to concerns that these instruments omit risk factors that may be specific to the prediction of violence risk in this population. The present thesis therefore aimed to investigate the predictive validity of a number of risk factors for violence in those with schizophrenia. Firstly, to identify key risk factors for violence, a meta-analysis was undertaken, finding that although a number of criminal history risk factors are strongly associated with violence risk, nonetheless a number of risk factors rarely assessed by existing violence risk assessment instruments were significantly associated with violence in those with schizophrenia; most notably a history of attempted suicide. Results of this review also suggested that although the criminal history domain is most strongly associated with violence risk, nonetheless, there is considerable variability in the magnitude of association for the individual risk factors. Study two therefore aimed to investigate this variability and found that a history of violence was most strongly associated with subsequent violence. Study three aimed to identify whether suicidal behaviour, which has rarely been considered risk factors for violence in previous work, incrementally contributes to the prediction of violence. A simple risk model composed of young age, comorbid substance use disorder, previous violence, and a history of suicidal threats, explained as much predictive validity, as measured by the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve, as established risk assessment instruments such as the HCR–20, LSI–R, PCL–R, and VRAG. Current risk assessment approaches may therefore need revision in light of these findings.
Supervisor: Fazel, Seena Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Psychotic illness ; Psychiatry ; risk factors ; violence