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Cantabria First-Episode Schizophrenia Study: three-year follow-up

  • José L. Vázquez-Barquero (a1), Maria J. Cuesta (a2), Sara Herrera Castanedo (a3), Ismael Lastra (a4), Andrés Herrán (a1) and Graham Dunn (a5)...



We present the findings from the three-year follow-up of all first episodes of schizophrenia occurring during a two-year period in Cantabria (in Spain).


(a) To describe the clinical characteristics of the illness from the early stages of the disease, and (b) to study the long-term psychosocial adjustment and psychopathological evolution of these patients, identifying predictors for the course of the illness.


Of the original cohort of 86 patients, 76 (88.3%) were fully evaluated at three-year follow-up. Psychiatric assessment was performed (PSE–9 and SANS/SAPS). Social adjustment was evaluated using the Disability Assessment Schedule (DAS). Information regarding the clinical evolution and use of health resources was also gathered.


The majority of patients with a first-contact diagnosis of schizophrenia failed to meet the criteria for a CATEGO diagnosis at follow-up. The SANS/SAPS assessments revealed a doubling in the proportion of patients with ‘negative schizophrenia’. The pattern of clinical course was also evaluated, with 24 (31.5%) of the patients having a good outcome. Being male and having low social class tended to be associated with poor clinical outcome.


The outcome of schizophrenia is less pessimistic than was originally thought.


Corresponding author

José L. Vázquez-Barquero, Unidad de Investigación en Psiquiatría Clinica y Social, Hospital Universitario ‘Marqués de Valdecilla’, Avenida de Valdecilla s/n, 39008 Santander, Spain


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Declaration of interest Funding provided by the Spanish lnstituteof Health.



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Cantabria First-Episode Schizophrenia Study: three-year follow-up

  • José L. Vázquez-Barquero (a1), Maria J. Cuesta (a2), Sara Herrera Castanedo (a3), Ismael Lastra (a4), Andrés Herrán (a1) and Graham Dunn (a5)...


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Cantabria First-Episode Schizophrenia Study: three-year follow-up

  • José L. Vázquez-Barquero (a1), Maria J. Cuesta (a2), Sara Herrera Castanedo (a3), Ismael Lastra (a4), Andrés Herrán (a1) and Graham Dunn (a5)...
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