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Longitudinal effects of cannabis use on attentional processes in patients with first episode of psychosis

Abstract: Background: Attention deficits have been considered to be a central characteristic of schizophrenia-spectrum disorders. However, the specific interactions with, and longitudinal effects of, cannabis use at the different stages of the disorder remain unknown. Due to the high percentage of patients who are cannabis users at the onset of the disease, our objective was to explore this relationship and how it evolves in the first three years of the disease. Method: A total of 461 patients with a first episode of psychosis (FEP) and 187 healthy controls were studied. The differences between cannabis users and non-users at baseline were explored based on both sociodemographic variables and performance in neuropsychological tests of attention. The interaction between cannabis, attentional, and clinical variables was followed up at 3 years. Results: Of the 648 participants included in this study, 229 (35.34%) were cannabis users. Of them, 187 (40.6%) were patients and 42 (22.5%) were healthy controls. At baseline, control groups [cannabis users (N = 42); non-users (N = 145)] outperformed the patient groups [cannabis users (N = 187); non-users (N = 274)] in all attention tasks. Longitudinal analyses showed significant improvements in the attentional domains at 3-year follow-up, mainly in the group of patients who had never used cannabis (N = 238), followed by ex-users (N = 105), and persistent users (N = 43). At 3-year follow-up, the group of ex-users was the one that achieved scores closer to those of healthy controls. Conclusion: FEP patients, both cannabis users and non-users, showed attention deficits. However, the patients who had never used cannabis fared better than cannabis users.

Otras publicaciones de la misma revista o congreso con autores/as de la Universidad de Cantabria

 Fuente: Schizophrenia Research, 2022, 244, 71-80

Editorial: Elsevier

 Año de publicación: 2022

Nº de páginas: 10

Tipo de publicación: Artículo de Revista

 DOI: 10.1016/j.schres.2022.05.011

ISSN: 0920-9964,1573-2509

Url de la publicación: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.schres.2022.05.011