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Suicidality in first episode psychosis is associated with insight and negative beliefs about psychosis

Barrett, E.A.; Sundet, K.; Faerden, A.; Agartz, I.; Bratlien, U.; Romm, K.L.; Mork, E.; Rossberg, J.I.; Steen, N.E.; Andreassen, O.A.; Melle, I.

Schizophrenia Research 123(2-3): 257-262

2010


ISSN/ISBN: 1573-2509
PMID: 20685083
DOI: 10.1016/j.schres.2010.07.018
Accession: 056005173

Suicidal behaviour is prevalent in psychotic disorders. Insight has been found to be associated with increased risk for suicidal behaviour, but not consistently. A possible explanation for this is that insight has different consequences for patients depending on their beliefs about psychosis. The present study investigated whether a relationship between insight, negative beliefs about psychosis and suicidality was mediated by depressive symptoms, and if negative beliefs about psychosis moderated the relationship between insight and suicidality in patients with a first episode of psychosis (FEP). One hundred ninety-four FEP-patients were assessed with a clinical interview for diagnosis, symptoms, functioning, substance use, suicidality, insight, and beliefs about psychosis. Nearly 46% of the patients were currently suicidal. Depressive symptoms, having a schizophrenia spectrum disorder, insight, and beliefs about negative outcomes for psychosis were independently associated with current suicidality; contradicting a mediating effect of depressive symptoms. Negative beliefs about psychosis did not moderate the effect of insight on current suicidality. The results indicate that more depressive symptoms, higher insight, and negative beliefs about psychosis increase the risk for suicidality in FEP-patients. The findings imply that monitoring insight should be part of assessing the suicide risk in patients with FEP, and that treating depression and counteracting negative beliefs about psychosis may possibly reduce the risk for suicidality.

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