The British Journal of Psychiatry
Cannabis and stimulant disorders and readmission 2 years after first-episode psychosis
Grant E. Sara, Philip M. Burgess, Gin S. Malhi, Harvey A. Whiteford, Wayne C. Hall
  • Declaration of interest




Few studies have examined the impact of stimulant use on outcome in early psychosis. Ceasing substance use may lead to positive outcomes in psychosis.


To examine whether baseline cannabis or stimulant disorders and ongoing drug use predict readmission within 2 years of a first psychosis admission.


Predictors of readmission were examined with Cox regression in 7269 people aged 15-29 years with a first psychosis admission.


Baseline cannabis and stimulant disorders did not predict readmission. A stimulant disorder diagnosis prior to index psychosis admission predicted readmission, but a prior cannabis disorder diagnosis did not. Ongoing problem drug use predicted readmission. The lowest rate of readmission occurred in people whose baseline drug problems were discontinued.


Prior admissions with stimulant disorder may be a negative prognostic sign in first-episode psychosis. Drug use diagnoses at baseline may be a good prognostic sign if they are identified and controlled.

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