The British Journal of Psychiatry

Abstract

BACKGROUND A trial of CT in acute psychosis conducted by the authors has shown a significant impact on the rate and degree of recovery of positive symptoms, the focus of the intervention. This paper seeks to determine whether these effects generalise to other features of acute psychosis including dysphoria, insight and "low level' psychotic thinking which were not directly targeted.

METHOD Measures of dysphoria, insight and psychotic thinking were taken over a six-month period following presentation for acute psychosis. Using survival analysis, time to recovery from psychosis using three definitions of increasing stringency was compared between the CT and control group.

RESULTS CT was associated with a 25-50% reduction in recovery time depending on the definition used.

CONCLUSION The impact of the CT intervention extended beyond positive symptoms to include insight, dysphoria and "low level' psychotic thinking. Nevertheless this kind of "clinical' recovery required a median of 20 weeks to complete. Implications for clinical models of acute care are discussed.