Adherence therapy most effective against schizophrenia relapse

Schizophrenics who are treated with adherence therapy show significant improvements when it comes to psychiatric symptoms, a new study reveals.

Non-adherance - when patients don't take regular doses of their prescribed medications - was shown to raise treatment costs by about $5,000 per year.

What is adherence therapy?

Adherance therapy (AT) is different than current clinical treatment, as the latter focuses more on patient education and disease awareness, giving the schizophrenic the power to control his own outcomes through learning about his condition. Adherence therapy, on the other hand, is centered around changing the way a patient thinks about medication and encouraging an individual to use it as a tool for managing the illness.

"Adherence is a complex problem and time needs to be invested in helping patients explore what they think about medication - there is no quick fix to get patients to take medication," said Professor Richard Gray, lead study author from UWE Bristol's Faculty of Health and Life Sciences.

In the study, more than 100 schizophrenic patients showed better psychiatric improvements when treated with adherence therapy than with conventional methods.

Changing the landscape of treatment

Gray notes that past studies on adherance therapy showed that it was not effective, which led to treatment guidelines that excluded it. But the new research suggests these guidelines ought to be updated to reflect current understanding of AT.

"Helping patients adhere to treatment is bread and butter to mental health professionals. But currently we don't do it very well," said Gray.

Using AT, Gray explains, can help solve a "very expensive problem" for the National Health Service.

"Our research provides evidence that AT offers an effective approach to improving outcomes for what is a serious and potentially debilitating illness," said Gray.

The study is published in the journal Schizophrenia Research.

Source: Medical Xpress

Image courtesy of voraorn / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

More Articles

Understanding the pathophysiology of schizophrenia (or, in other words, the physiological...

Scientists have been studying schizophrenia for a long time, trying to determine what...

It is estimated that nearly 1.2% of the population in the U.S. has schizophrenia. The disorder can vary in terms of severity and manageability,...

A diagnosis of schizophrenia can bring about a limitless number of changes...

An estimated 30% of people with schizophrenia have refractory schizophrenia, which means their...

More Articles

More Articles

Understanding the pathophysiology of schizophrenia (or, in other words, the physiological...

Scientists have been studying schizophrenia for a long time, trying to determine what...

It is estimated that nearly 1.2% of the population in the U.S. has schizophrenia. The disorder can vary in terms of severity and manageability,...

A diagnosis of schizophrenia can bring about a limitless number of changes...

An estimated 30% of people with schizophrenia have refractory schizophrenia, which means their...

There are a number of talented musicians who have suffered from schizophrenia at some point in...

While most people can’t fathom purposely hurting themselves, self-injury is not uncommon with certain types of psychiatric disorders. Although it...

Although schizophrenia goes back several thousand years, this most serious of psychiatric disorders was not officially coined “schizophrenia”...

The neurotransmitter serotonin is known to influence a number of important brain functions, including perception, mood, sleep, appetite, cognition...

There are a number of different research methods used in psychology, but one of the most interesting to the layperson is the case study. Case...

The question of whether people with schizophrenia know they are ill is actually quite...

The term "schizophrenic break" refers to an episode of acute psychosis in someone with...

Creatine is a type of acid naturally manufactured by our liver, pancreas and kidneys. One of its primary roles in the body is to provide energy...

No one knows exactly what causes schizophrenia, and there are a number of...

Acute schizophrenia is what most people think of when they think of schizophrenia: varying...