OBJECTIVE: This randomised clinical trial assessed the effects of a 16-week cognitive remediation programme (NEUROCOM) combined with an early intervention service (EIS) vs. EIS alone. METHOD: One hundred and seventeen patients with first episode psychosis were randomly assigned to 4 months cognitive remediation combined with EIS vs. EIS alone. Statistical analysis of effect was based on intention to treat. RESULTS: A total of 98 patients (83.8%) participated in post-training assessments at 4 months and 92 (78.6%) in 12-month follow-up assessments. No effects were found on the primary outcome measure functional capacity. At the post-training assessment, the intervention group had improved significantly on Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (Cohen's d=0.54, P=0.01), Positive and Negative Symptoms Scale (PANSS), General Psychopathology Scale (Cohen's d=0.51, P=0.05) and the verbal learning domain (Cohen's d=0.46, P=0.02). At follow-up assessment, the intervention group retained the significant improvements on the verbal learning domain (Cohen's d=0.58, P<0.05). Furthermore, significant improvements were observed on the working memory domain (Cohen's d=0.56, P=0.01) and PANSS positive symptoms (Cohen's d=0.44, P=0.04), while improvement on the composite score was marginally significant (Cohen's d=0.34, P=0.05). CONCLUSION: In accordance with other cognitive remediation programmes, this programme demonstrates some immediate and long-term effect on cognitive functioning, symptoms and self-esteem.
Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 2014, Vol 130, Issue 4, p. 300-310
Journal Article; Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Adult; Cognitive Therapy; Early Medical Intervention; Female; Humans; Male; Psychotic Disorders; Self Concept; Single-Blind Method; Treatment Outcome; Young Adult