Schizophrenia and related disorders are often preceded by attenuated psychosis symptoms, sometimes referred to as attenuated psychosis syndrome, but little is known about practitioners’ current practices with regard to this population. This survey of clinical psychologists, psychiatrists, and general practitioners explored treatment as usual of attenuated psychosis syndrome.
In 2008, a total of 1,500 practitioners were mailed surveys containing vignettes describing individuals with full, attenuated, and no psychotic symptoms and a checklist of possible interventions. Practitioners were asked to select interventions that would help or harm the individual.
The responses (N=293, 20%) suggested that practitioners treated attenuated psychosis syndrome similarly to full-threshold psychosis. The use of antipsychotic medications to treat attenuated symptoms was endorsed by 69% of practitioners. Family support groups and family involvement were endorsed by 58% and 49% of respondents, respectively.
Further development and dissemination of practice guidelines may help providers treat attenuated psychosis syndrome.