Therapies for positive symptoms

What are positive symptoms of schizophrenia?

Pharmacological treatments alone may provide insufficient respite from the positive symptoms of schizophrenia. Positive symptoms include hallucinations and delusions (or reality distortion symptoms) and are a well-documented feature of schizophrenia. Psychosocial therapies may provide a clinical adjunct to pharmacological therapy for these symptoms, and include cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), hallucination focused integrative treatment, acceptance and commitment therapy, experience focused counselling, family intervention, metacognitive training, mindfulness, social skills training, and supportive therapy.

What is the evidence for psychosocial treatments for positive symptoms?

Moderate to high quality evidence shows small effects of greater improvement in positive symptoms with CBT when compared to treatment as usual or inactive controls. Lower quality evidence suggests hallucination focused integrative treatment may also improve positive symptoms when compared to treatment as usual.

There were no other significant effects for positive symptoms when comparing any other psychotherapy with treatment as usual, inactive control or other psychotherapies.

September 2020

Last updated at: 4:09 am, 21st September 2020
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