3 years ago

Social cognition interventions for people with schizophrenia: a systematic review focussing on methodological quality and intervention modality

People with a diagnosis of schizophrenia have significant social and functional difficulties. Social cognition was found to influences these outcomes and in recent years interventions targeting this domain were developed. This paper reviews the existing literature on social cognition interventions for people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia focussing on: i) comparing focussed (i.e. targeting only one social cognitive domain) and global interventions and ii) studies methodological quality. Method Systematic search was conducted on PubMed and PsycInfo. Studies were included if they were randomised control trials, participants had a diagnosis of schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder, and the intervention targeted at least one out of four social cognition domains (i.e. theory of mind, affect recognition, social perception and attribution bias). All papers were assessed for methodological quality. Information on the intervention, control condition, study methodology and the main findings from each study were extracted and critically summarised. Results Data from 32 studies fulfilled the inclusion criteria, considering a total of 1440 participants. Taking part in social cognition interventions produced significant improvements in theory of mind and affect recognition compared to both passive and active control conditions. Results were less clear for social perception and attributional bias. Focussed and global interventions had similar results on outcomes. Overall study methodological quality was modest. There was very limited evidence showing that social cognitive intervention result in functional outcome improvement. Conclusions The evidence considered suggests that social cognition interventions may be a valuable approach for people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia. However, evidence quality is limited by measure heterogeneity, modest study methodology and short follow-up periods. The findings point to a number of recommendations for future research, including measurement standardisation, appropriately powered studies and investigation of the impact of social cognition improvements on functioning problems.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0272735816304640

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