The University of Birmingham (Live System) Neurocognitive predictors of transition to psychosis: medium- to long-term findings from a sample at ultra-high risk for psychosis
BACKGROUND Neurocognitive abnormalities are prevalent in both first episode schizophrenia patients and in ultra high risk (UHR) patients. AIM To compare verbal fluency performance at baseline in UHR in patients that did and did not make the transition to psychosis. METHOD Baseline verbal fluency performance in UHR-patients (n=47) was compared to match first episode patients (n=69) and normal controls (n=42). RESULTS Verbal fluency (semantic category) scores in UHR-patients did not differ significantly from the score in first episode schizophrenia patients. Both the UHR group (p<0.003) and the patient group (p<0.0001) performed significantly worse than controls. Compared to the non-transition group, the transition group performed worse on verbal fluency, semantic category (p<0.006) at baseline. CONCLUSIONS Verbal fluency (semantic category) is disturbed in UHR-patients that make the transition to psychosis and could contribute to an improved prediction of transition to psychosis in UHR-patients.