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A comparison of neurocognition and functioning in first episode psychosis populations: do research samples reflect the real world?

  • Kline, Emily1, 2
  • Hendel, Victoria2
  • Friedman-Yakoobian, Michelle1, 2
  • Mesholam-Gately, Raquelle I.1, 2
  • Findeisen, Ann2
  • Zimmet, Suzanna1, 2
  • Wojcik, Joanne D.1, 2
  • Petryshen, Tracey L.1, 3
  • Woo, Tsung-Ung W.1, 2, 4
  • Goldstein, Jill M.1, 5
  • Shenton, Martha E.1, 6, 7
  • Keshavan, Matcheri S.1, 2
  • McCarley, Robert W.1, 7
  • Seidman, Larry J.1, 2, 3
  • 1 Harvard Medical School, Department of Psychiatry, Boston, MA, 02115, USA , Boston (United States)
  • 2 Public Psychiatry Division of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Massachusetts Mental Health Center, 75 Fenwood Road, Boston, MA, 02115, USA , Boston (United States)
  • 3 Massachusetts General Hospital, Department of Psychiatry, Center for Human Genetic Research, 185 Cambridge St., Boston, MA, 02114, USA , Boston (United States)
  • 4 McLean Hospital, Laboratory of Cellular Neuropathology, 115 Mill St., Belmont, MA, 02478, USA , Belmont (United States)
  • 5 Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Department of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, Connors Center for Women’s Health and Gender Biology, 1620 Tremont St., Boston, MA, 02120, USA , Boston (United States)
  • 6 Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Department of Psychiatry and Radiology, 1249 Boylston Street, Boston, MA, 02215, USA , Boston (United States)
  • 7 VA Boston Healthcare System, 940 Belmont St., Brockton, MA, 02301, USA , Brockton (United States)
Published Article
Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology
Springer Berlin Heidelberg
Publication Date
Nov 28, 2018
DOI: 10.1007/s00127-018-1631-x
Springer Nature


PurposeThe current study evaluates the demographic, clinical, and neurocognitive characteristics of a recruited FEP research sample, a research control group, and a FEP clinic sample that were assessed and treated within the same center and time period.MethodsThis study utilized data collected through an observational study and a retrospective chart review. Samples were ascertained in the Longitudinal Assessment and Monitoring of Clinical Status and Brain Function in Adolescents and Adults study and the Prevention and Recovery in Early Psychosis clinic. FEP clinic patients (n = 77), FEP research participants (n = 44), and age-matched controls (n = 38) were assessed using the MATRICS consensus cognitive battery and global functioning social and role scales. Between-group differences were assessed via one-way ANOVA and Chi-square analyses.ResultsNo significant differences were observed between groups with regard to age and gender. The FEP research sample had a higher proportion of white participants, better social and role functioning, and better neurocognitive performance when compared with the FEP clinical population. The clinic sample also had more diagnostic variability and higher prevalence of substance use disorders relative to the FEP research sample.ConclusionsResearchers should be aware of how study design and recruitment practices may impact the representativeness of samples, with particular concern for equal representation of racial minorities and patients with more severe illness. Studies should be designed to minimize burden to promote a wider range of participation.

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