Risk factors for increased duration of untreated psychosis. Results from the FACE-SZ dataset

Schizophr Res. 2018 May:195:529-533. doi: 10.1016/j.schres.2017.08.058. Epub 2017 Sep 6.


Objectives: Reducing the duration of untreated psychosis (DUP) may improve the prognosis of schizophrenia. This study investigated the prevalence, and associated risk factors, of long DUP in a large, non-selected sample of community-dwelling schizophrenia patients (SZ).

Method: 478 community-dwelling stable SZ participants (122 women and 356 men; mean age 32.37±9.86years) were recruited between 2010 and 2016. The mean retrospective DUP was evaluated from both patient and family reports, as well as hospital/psychiatrists records. Long DUP was defined as >2years.

Results: The mean DUP was 1.5years. 80 participants (16.7%) had a DUP>2years. In multivariate analyses, after adjustment for sex, education level, history of childhood trauma and history of maternal schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, long DUP was associated with a younger age of illness onset (19.3±6.67years vs. 22.0±6.51years, adjusted odd ratio aOR=0.91, 95%CI [0.86; 0.97], p=0.003) and cannabis use disorder (20.0% vs. 10.3%, aOR=2.41, 95%CI [1.14-5.09], p=0.02).

Conclusion: A high proportion of SZ patients still have a long DUP. The present results suggest that illness onset before age 19years and cannabis use are associated with long DUP in schizophrenia patients. Early psychosis detection programs should prioritize the targeting of these populations.

Keywords: Age at onset; Antipsychotic; Cannabis; Duration of untreated psychosis; Schizophrenia.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age of Onset
  • Cohort Studies
  • Delayed Diagnosis
  • Educational Status
  • Female
  • France / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Independent Living
  • Male
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychotic Disorders* / diagnosis
  • Psychotic Disorders* / epidemiology
  • Psychotic Disorders* / psychology
  • Risk Factors
  • Schizophrenia / epidemiology*
  • Schizophrenic Psychology*
  • Sex Factors
  • Young Adult