A randomised multicentre trialEt randomiseret multicenter forsøg
Background Between 75% and 85% of patients with schizophrenia have cognitive impairments. The impairments have a negative influence on the patient's ability to maintain work, maintain contact with friends, independent living and living in a social relationship. Compared to treatment as usual, studies using Cognitive Adaptation Training (CAT), including training of compensatory strategies to sequence patient's adaptive behaviours, have shown improvement in social functioning, decreased relapse, better compliance to medical treatment and increased quality of life. However, no studies, up to now, have investigated the effect of CAT in younger patients with schizophrenia Purpose The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effect of CAT in comparison with treatment as usual, focusing on social functions, symptoms, relapse, re-hospitalisation, and quality of life in younger outpatients with schizophrenia. Methods The study is a randomised multicentre trial that takes place at the Schizophrenia Clinic in Esbjerg and the Early Intervention Team at Odense University Hospital. In the period from January 2009 to April 2010 a total of 164 consecutively enrolled patients will be randomly assigned to CAT treatment or conventional treatment. Inclusion criteria: Patients with a diagnosis of schizophrenia, more than one year from referral to the psychiatric clinic, receive mental medication and continual psychosocial treatment and patients who have signed informed consent. Exclusion criteria: Patients who don't understand or speak Danish, who live at an institution or who are long-term hospitalized and patients who are unwillingly to complete protocol. Assessments Primary Outcome Measure Social functioning Secondary Outcome Measures Symptoms, Quality of Life and frequency of relapse and hospitalization Results At September 2009 33 patients have been enrolled in the trial and 30 patients have been tested and randomised to either intervention or control group. The study is expected to contribute new knowledge to the significance of initiatives aimed specifically at reduced intellectual functions compared to the integrated treatment of schizophrenia. In addition, the project may provide new knowledge about how compensatory strategies can be included in care and treatment. Furthermore, the project will provide further understanding of the practical application of psychological tests.