Can quantitative EEG measures predict clinical outcome in subjects at Clinical High Risk for psychosis? A prospective multicenter study

Mirjam J van Tricht*, Stephan Ruhrmann, Martijn Arns, Ralf Müller, Mitja Bodatsch, Eva Velthorst, Johannes H T M Koelman, Lo J Bour, Katharina Zurek, Frauke Schultze-Lutter, Joachim Klosterkötter, Don H Linszen, Lieuwe de Haan, Anke Brockhaus-Dumke, Dorien H Nieman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


BACKGROUND: Prediction studies in subjects at Clinical High Risk (CHR) for psychosis are hampered by a high proportion of uncertain outcomes. We therefore investigated whether quantitative EEG (QEEG) parameters can contribute to an improved identification of CHR subjects with a later conversion to psychosis.

METHODS: This investigation was a project within the European Prediction of Psychosis Study (EPOS), a prospective multicenter, naturalistic field study with an 18-month follow-up period. QEEG spectral power and alpha peak frequencies (APF) were determined in 113 CHR subjects. The primary outcome measure was conversion to psychosis.

RESULTS: Cox regression yielded a model including frontal theta (HR=1.82; [95% CI 1.00-3.32]) and delta (HR=2.60; [95% CI 1.30-5.20]) power, and occipital-parietal APF (HR=.52; [95% CI .35-.80]) as predictors of conversion to psychosis. The resulting equation enabled the development of a prognostic index with three risk classes (hazard rate 0.057 to 0.81).

CONCLUSIONS: Power in theta and delta ranges and APF contribute to the short-term prediction of psychosis and enable a further stratification of risk in CHR samples. Combined with (other) clinical ratings, EEG parameters may therefore be a useful tool for individualized risk estimation and, consequently, targeted prevention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)42-7
Number of pages6
JournalSchizophrenia Research
Issue number1-3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2014


  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Antipsychotic Agents
  • Brain Waves
  • Electroencephalography
  • Female
  • Fourier Analysis
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prognosis
  • Prospective Studies
  • Psychotic Disorders
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk
  • Risk Factors
  • Survival Analysis
  • Young Adult

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