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Review: Specialist programmes and second-generation antipsychotics reduce relapse after first-episode psychosis

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Are pharmacological and non-pharmacological interventions effective in preventing relapse in first-episode psychosis (FEP) patients?


The primary outcome was relapse, defined according to the criteria used in the individual studies.



Systematic review and meta-analysis.

Data sources

CENTRAL, MEDLINE, MEDLINE Unindexed, EMBASE, PsycINFO, UMI Proquest Digital Dissertations, Information Science Citation Index Expanded, Information Social Sciences Citation Index, and Information Arts and Humanities Citation Index were searched from inception to December 2008. Additional studies were also identified using conference abstracts from ISI Science and Technology Proceedings and ISI Information Social Science and Humanities proceeding; hand searching of reference lists of retrieved trials, previous reviews and meeting abstracts; and contact with researchers and experts in the field.

Study selection and analysis

Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of pharmacological and non-pharmacological interventions, where at least 75% of participants experiencing FEP diagnosed according to DSM or ICD criteria were included. A broad definition of FEP was used and could include schizophrenia, schizophreniform disorder, schizoaffective disorder, delusional disorder, substance-induced psychotic disorder and psychotic disorder not otherwise …

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  • Sources of funding Marqués de Valdecilla Public Foundation – Research Institute (FMV-IFIMAV), Santander, Spain; Colonial Foundation; National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia.


  • Competing interests None.