Document Detail

Does active psychosis cause neurobiological pathology? A critical review of the neurotoxicity hypothesis.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  24067164     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
BACKGROUND: Since the neurotoxicity hypothesis was launched in 1991, it has generated a great deal of interest and given rise to several studies investigating the validity of the hypothesis that being psychotic has a toxic effect on the brain. The toxicity argument is used to justify early treatment. This review attempts to assess the studies that have addressed the question: Does an active psychosis, indexed by the duration of untreated psychosis (DUP), cause neurobiological pathology?
METHOD: The validity of the hypothesis has been studied primarily by correlation analyses that assess whether there are significant correlations between DUP and changes in neurocognitive functioning or brain structure. In this review, relevant reports were identified by a literature survey.
RESULTS: Of the 35 studies (33 papers) evaluated, six neurocognitive studies supported the hypothesis and 16 did not. Eight morphology studies supported the hypothesis and five did not. In general, the studies that did not support the neurotoxicity hypothesis were larger in size and had more adequate designs (longitudinal) than those that supported the hypothesis.
CONCLUSIONS: Overall, there is limited empirical evidence for the neurotoxicity hypothesis in the studies reviewed. However, it is possible that there is a threshold value for a toxic effect of psychosis, rather than a linear relationship between DUP and a neurotoxic effect, and that several of the studies evaluated did not have a long enough DUP to detect a toxic effect of active psychosis.
B R Rund
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2013-9-25
Journal Detail:
Title:  Psychological medicine     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1469-8978     ISO Abbreviation:  Psychol Med     Publication Date:  2013 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2013-9-26     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  1254142     Medline TA:  Psychol Med     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  1-14     Citation Subset:  -    
Department of Psychology, University of Oslo, and Vestre Viken Hospital Trust, Drammen, Norway.
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