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Pre-onset Abnormalities, Psychosocial Stressors, and the Development of Psychosis: A Prospective, Population-based Study

Thompson, Judy Lorraine (2006) Pre-onset Abnormalities, Psychosocial Stressors, and the Development of Psychosis: A Prospective, Population-based Study. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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There is now considerable evidence that at least some children who later develop schizophrenia differ from those who do not across a variety of behavioral domains. Further clarifying the nature and specificity of such antecedents will inform models of etiology and pre-onset pathophysiology, as well as efforts to develop preventative strategies for psychotic disorders. Thus, a prospective study of potential predictors of psychosis was conducted. Data from 737 male participants of the population-based longitudinal Pittsburgh Youth Study were examined to determine whether psychotic-like experiences and behavior, social withdrawal, peer rejection, and problematic parent-child relationships as assessed annually from ages 13 to 17 predict early adulthood psychotic symptoms as assessed by the Diagnostic Interview Schedule at a mean age of 22. Sixteen boys reported at least one psychotic symptom that persisted for at least one month (psychosis group), 52 met criteria for antisocial personality disorder (APD), and 22 for a depressive and/or anxiety disorder. These groups were compared to the 647 boys not reporting psychotic symptoms nor meeting criteria for APD or an anxiety or depressive disorder (controls). Schizophrenia-like positive symptoms, social withdrawal, peer rejection, and problematic parent-child relationships at ages 13 to 17 were associated with the development of early adulthood psychotic symptoms, but were not specifically predictive of psychosis relative to APD or depressive and/or anxiety disorders. Further, the psychosis group increased significantly more on indices of positive symptoms and peer rejection across adolescence compared to controls, and such patterns of change over time were generally specific to psychosis relative to APD and depressive and/or anxiety disorders. The current study adds to the existing literature by being among the few to use a representative sample to address such questions, and underscores the utility of assessing both level of and patterns of change over time on indices of functioning when attempting to identify and characterize the functioning of individuals at risk for psychosis development.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Thompson, Judy Lorrainejutst4@pitt.eduJUTST4
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairPogue-Geile, Michael Fmfpg@pitt.eduMFPG
Committee MemberHaas, Gretchen Lhaasgl@upmc.eduGLHAAS
Committee MemberStouthamer-Loeber,
Committee MemberSayette, Michael Asayette@pitt.eduSAYETTE
Committee MemberCampbell, Susan Bsbcamp@pitt.eduSBCAMP
Date: 2 October 2006
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 13 July 2006
Approval Date: 2 October 2006
Submission Date: 31 July 2006
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Psychology
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: developmental; longitudinal
Other ID:, etd-07312006-121155
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:55
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2016 14:36


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