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Title: Negative symptoms in first-episode psychosis : a mixed methods investigation
Author: Gee, Brioney
ISNI:       0000 0004 6351 413X
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2016
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Negative symptoms – reductions in expression, motivation, pleasure and sociability – are observed across the spectrum of functional psychoses. They have been identified as a significant predictor of poor outcomes following first-episode psychosis and are a treatment priority for individuals with lived-experience of psychosis. However, the mechanisms underlying negative symptoms remain poorly understood. This thesis aims to contribute to our understanding of negative symptoms in the early phase of psychosis using a mixed methods approach. Participants in the EDEN study (n = 1006) were followed up for 12 months following acceptance into UK Early Intervention in Psychosis services. Negative symptom severity data were modelled using latent class growth analysis, allowing latent classes comprising individuals with similar patterns of change in negative symptoms severity over time to be identified. Predictors of latent class membership were ascertained and the relationship between negative symptom trajectories and concurrent social recovery explored. Subsequently, transcripts of qualitative interviews conducted with a subsample (n = 24) of the cohort were analysed thematically. Comparisons were made between the accounts of members of the identified latent classes. Experiences and personal understandings of negative symptoms, psychosis, treatment and recovery were explored, providing insights into potential mechanisms underlying negative symptoms and their relationship with social recovery. The quantitative and qualitative findings were integrated and interpreted in relation to existing research and theory. Together they informed the development of a conceptual model of negative symptoms and their relationship with poor social recovery following first-episode psychosis. The model suggests that active psychological processes may be important to negative symptoms and their contribution to poor social recovery. It is proposed that offering tailored psychosocial interventions at the earliest stage of disorder – after the onset of nonspecific negative symptoms but before the emergence of attenuated positive symptoms – may be warranted to improve outcomes following psychosis onset.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available