Clinical characteristics of patients who have recovered from schizophrenia: the role of empathy and positive-self schema

Authors

  • Young-Chul Chung,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Hospital and Research Institute of Clinical Medicine, Jeonju
    • Department of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Medical School and Institute for Medical Sciences
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Hyun-Min Kim,

    1. Maemsarang Hospital, In-san Medical Foundation, Wanju, Korea
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Keon-Hak Lee,

    1. Maemsarang Hospital, In-san Medical Foundation, Wanju, Korea
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Tong Zhao,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Medical School and Institute for Medical Sciences
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Guang-Biao Huang,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Medical School and Institute for Medical Sciences
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Tae-Won Park,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Medical School and Institute for Medical Sciences
    2. Department of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Hospital and Research Institute of Clinical Medicine, Jeonju
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Jong-Chul Yang

    1. Department of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Medical School and Institute for Medical Sciences
    2. Department of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Hospital and Research Institute of Clinical Medicine, Jeonju
    Search for more papers by this author

Corresponding author: Professor Young-Chul Chung, Department of Psychiatry, Chonbuk National University Medical School, 634-18 Geumam-dong, Deokjin-gu, Jeonju 561-712, Korea. Email: chungyc@chonbuk.ac.kr

Abstract

Aim

This article compares the socio-demographic and clinical characteristics of patients with schizophrenia who recovered with those who achieved remission.

Methods

Participants were classified based on predetermined criteria for recovery and remission. Data on demographic characteristics, information on duration of untreated psychosis, and assessments of current and historical symptom profiles and socio-occupational functioning emerged from careful chart review and direct interviews. Cross-sectional assessments of clinical variables were derived from the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale, the Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptoms, the Personal and Social Performance Scale, the Social Functioning Questionnaire, the Schizophrenia Cognition Rating Scale (ScoRS), the Basic Empathy Scale, and the Brief Core Schema Scales (BCSS).

Results

We found no significant differences between recovered and remitted groups with respect to demographic variables or duration of untreated psychosis. Cognitive and total empathy scores, positive-self schema score on the BCSS, and global score on the ScoRS were significantly higher in the recovered than the remitted group. Furthermore, patients with good levels of empathy and positive-self schema and intact neurocognitive functioning were more likely to achieve recovery.

Conclusion

These results suggest that empathy, positive-self schema and neurocognitive functioning may serve as important clinical characteristics distinguishing those patients who have recovered from those who have achieved only remission.

Ancillary