ABSTRACT Using role-playing tests simulating real-life situations, we investigated improvement in the social skills, especially information processing, of patients with schizophrenia in response to day-care in psychiatry and social skills training. From 20 pair-matched schizophrenia patients, 10 were assigned to a day-care/SST group and 10 to a control group undergoing usual treatment. After 6 months, sending and receiving skills were assessed by means of role-playing tests, psychiatric symptoms, social function, and cognitive function. The day-care/SST group showed a significant improvement and a large effect size in sending skills. Receiving skills also improved, showing a medium effect size, but the difference from the control group was not statistically significant. No statistically significant changes were observed in the other measures. That no changes occurred in social function, psychiatric symptoms, or cognitive function leads to two conclusions: 1) cognition targeted, specialized training and comprehension of cognitive remediation, psychiatric rehabilitation, and social skill development are necessary for improvement in other domains, especially symptoms and social functions; and 2) improvement resulting from day-care in psychiatry and SST alone is limited. In addition, further investigations over a longer observation period and a greater sample size are needed.
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Sakuma, H. , Miyamoto, Y. , Yamamoto, Y. , Miura, S. and Niwa, S. (2012) Improvement in social skills in patients with schizophrenia following 6 months of day-care treatment. Open Journal of Psychiatry, 2, 347-354. doi: 10.4236/ojpsych.2012.224049.
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