Exploring functioning in schizophrenia: Predictors of functional capacity and real-world behaviour

Margherita Bechi, M Bosia, M Spangaro, M Buonocore, S Cavedoni, G Agostoni, L Bianchi, F Cocchi, Carmelo Guglielmino, E Smeraldi, R Cavallaro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Impairment in daily functioning still represents a major treatment issue in schizophrenia and a more in-depth knowledge of underlying constructs is crucial for interventions to translate into better outcomes. This study aims to model factors influencing both functional capacity and real-life behaviour in a sample of outpatients with chronic schizophrenia, through a comprehensive assessment including evaluations of psychopathology, cognitive and social cognitive abilities, premorbid adjustment, family environment and early childhood experiences. No significant correlation was observed between functional capacity and real-life behaviour. Functional capacity was significantly predicted by IQ, while real-life behaviour was significantly predicted by empathy, affect recognition and symptoms. Functional capacity seems mainly related to neurocognition, whereas real-life behaviour appears more complex, requiring the integration of different factors including symptoms, with a major role of empathy. Results thus support a divergence between the two constructs of functioning and their underlying components and highlight the need to target both dimensions through individualized sequential rehabilitation programs in order to optimize functional outcome. © 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)118-124
Number of pages7
JournalPsychiatry Research
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 2017


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