Background Early intervention services for psychosis aim to detect emergent symptoms, reduce the duration of untreated psychosis, and improve access to effective treatments. Aims To evaluate the effectiveness of early intervention services, cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) and family intervention in early psychosis. Method Systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials of early intervention services, CBT and family intervention for people with early psychosis. Results Early intervention services reduced hospital admission, relapse rates and symptom severity, and improved access to and engagement with treatment. Used alone, family intervention reduced relapse and hospital admission rates, whereas CBT reduced the severity of symptoms with little impact on relapse or hospital admission. Conclusions For people with early psychosis, early intervention services appear to have clinically important benefits over standard care. Including CBT and family intervention within the service may contribute to improved outcomes in this critical period. The longer-term benefits of this approach and its component treatments for people with early and established psychosis need further research.
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