Aim. The present study aims to analyse relationships between the way of pharmacological treatment (antipsychotic vs antipsychotic + antidepressant) and negative symptoms in a group of schizophrenia patients hospitalised for the first time 11 to 15 years ago. Depressive symptoms, social functioning, and quality of life were also scrutinised.
Methods. 56 patients were assessed one month after the hospitalisation (Time 1), and then as follows: 1 year later, 4–6, 7–11 and 11–15 years after Time 1. The following measures were used: Marder’s Negative Symptoms Factor Score (NSFS), Calgary Depression Scale for Schizophrenia (CDSS), Social Functioning (SFS) and WHOQoL – Bref scales.
Results. Most patients received antipsychotic medications throughout the whole observation period (85.7–94.6%). Out of them, 69.6–77.6% were treated with antipsychotics only and 22.9–32.4% with antipsychotics + antidepressants. There were no significant relationships between the mode of treatment and the frequency of negative symptoms or significant differences between the compared groups regarding the mean scores of the CDSS, SFS, and WHOQoL at any time point of the observation.
Conclusions. The way of treatment in terms of monotherapy (antipsychotics only) vs polytherapy (+ antidepressants) did not differentiate the frequency of negative symptoms and the levels of other clinical and psychosocial indicators of the course of the disease. The findings seem to reflect lack of satisfactory fulfilment of patients’ needs concerning relieving negative symptoms of schizophrenia.