Faculty Publications and Other Works -- Nursing


Describing the Health Parameters of Outpatients with Schizophrenia

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Few studies have examined the physical health parameters of persons with schizophrenia. This pilot study describes the physical health and psychiatric symptoms in outpatients with schizophrenia. Participants (N = 11) were recruited from a population of persons with schizophrenia receiving care at an outpatient clinic in a Veterans Affairs hospital located in the southeast. Following the granting of medical clearance, data regarding sociodemographics and prescribed medications were collected via record review. Physical health parameters included 6-minute walking distance, body mass index, and percentage of body fat. Functional health status was measured using the Duke Health Profile. Psychiatric symptoms were measured using the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale. A trained research assistant performed all measures in private offices at the study site. Most participants met the criteria for being classified as overweight or obese and demonstrated poor aerobic fitness. More research is needed to examine responses of veterans with schizophrenia to interventions designed to improve physical health parameters.

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