Abstract

Background: Cannabis is one of the most commonly used drugsamong young people across Europe (EMCDDA data 2014), Moreover,it is one of the most abused illicit drugs among patients suffering fromschizophrenia (Linszen et al., 1994) and, particularly, in patients at theirfirst episode of psychosis (Donoghue et al., 2011). Furthermore,patients suffering from psychosis with a history of cannabis use havean earlier age of onset of psychosis (AOP) than those who never usedit (Di Forti et al., 2013).We aim to investigate if the reported association between use ofcannabis and AOP is consistent across to European samples withexpected differences in pattern of cannabis use (i.e. age at first use,frequency of use)Methods: Cannabis is one of the most commonly used drugs amongyoung people across Europe (EMCDDA data 2014), Moreover, it is oneof the most abused illicit drugs among patients suffering fromschizophrenia (Linszen et al., 1994) and, particularly, in patients at theirfirst episode of psychosis (Donoghue et al., 2011). Furthermore,patients suffering from psychosis with a history of cannabis use havean earlier age of onset of psychosis (AOP) than those who never usedit (Di Forti et al., 2013).We aim to investigate if the reported association between use ofcannabis and AOP is consistent across to European samples withexpected differences in pattern of cannabis use (i.e. age at first use,frequency of use)Results: In the total sample, N = 935, comparing FEP who werecannabis users with never users, we found a significant difference inmean AOP (cannabis users: 28.30 (9.05) vs. non-users: 34.94 (12.5), t = -9.32, Po0.001). Moreover, 58% of cannabis users started at age ≤16years old, with mean age of onset of Psychotic Disorder (25.47,sd = 7.03), compared with those who started later (M = 25.47, sd =10.05) (t = -9.42, Po0.001). When the sample was split in NE and SEgroups, we found that NE sample the mean AOP in cannabis users was28.12 (±8.42) and 34.18 (±12.68) non-users (t = -4.65, Po0.001). In SEsample the mean AOP in cannabis users is 29.02 (±9.62) and in neverusers is 35.55 (±11.61) (t = -5.75, Po0.001). All predictors arestatistically significant (in NE sample age first use β = .31, t = 5.16,P = .000, frequency β = -1.80, t = -2.93, Po0.001; in SE sample age firstuse β = 0.41, t = 6.67, P = .000, frequency β = -2.87, t = -4.66, Po0.001).In SE, the percentage of variance explained in a regression model is31% (R2adj = .30) vs 16% (R2adj = .15) of NE.Discussion: Our results support the association between cannabis useand younger AOP in both samples, but were not observed significantdifference across Europe. Linear regression model on predictors (ageof first use, frequency of use) analyzed in the NE and the SE clinicalsamples confirmed relationship of causality with dependent variable(AOP), with a higher percentage of explained variance in sample of SEthan NE.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Pagine41-42
Numero di pagine2
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2016

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