Impact of Cannabis Use on Gender Based Outcomes in Early Phase Psychosis

Poster A124, Monday, October 8, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, Essex Ballroom

Candice Crocker1,2, Scot E Purdon3, Christopher Hanstock3, Madison Holmans1, Philip Tibbo1,2; 1Dalhousie University, 2Nova Scotia Health Authority, 3University of Alberta

Female gender is associated with superior outcomes in early phase psychosis (EPP) services. However, there is evidence that cannabis use may more profoundly impact the disease course in female EPP patients as opposed to males. The impact of cannabis use on gender in EPP will be discussed in the context of data from two different approaches. First, we examined patient outcomes in a retrospective study of a comprehensive clinical databank of patient outcomes and characteristics that is maintained in our program. Both clinical and functional outcomes were queried for 92 female early psychosis patients that were identified through the WHO-ASSIST as using or non-using cannabis at time of program entry. Second, we examined gender differences by imaging. 3T magnetic resonance spectroscopy data were collected from a region the prefrontal cortex, including a rostral portion of the anterior cingulate cortex from 130 male and female subjects with psychotic disorders as well as healthy controls with co-varying for cannabis use. There was no significant difference in age at clinic entry between males and females but female users had a significantly earlier age of onset as compared to non-users (p<0.05); other differences in functional outcomes were also observed. There were significant changes in choline containing compounds in EPP females relative to healthy controls but not EPP males (p<0.01). The positivity of female gender on outcomes in early phase psychosis are negated with cannabis at time of entry. Ongoing use is associated poorer functional outcomes that may be related to changes in white matter.

Topic Area: Substance Use

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