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Psychotic Disorders in Patients Who Use Synthetic Cannabinoids


Journal of Psychiatric Practice: November 2019 - Volume 25 - Issue 6 - p 485–490
doi: 10.1097/PRA.0000000000000429
Practitioner's Corner

Objective: The main objective of this study was to investigate the structure of psychotic disorders due to synthetic cannabinoid use and to determine differences in clinical characteristics and disease course between such substance-induced psychosis and psychosis associated with a primary diagnosis of schizophrenia.

Methods: This was a longitudinal, observational cohort study that included male patients who underwent inpatient treatment in the intensive care unit or in the emergency department due to substance-induced psychoses. The follow-up period was up to 2 years.

Results: We identified 4 clinical variants of substance-induced psychoses in patients who use synthetic cannabinoids.

Conclusions: Our study revealed that psychotic symptoms are typical manifestations in association with intoxication with synthetic cannabinoids, and we identified several nonspecific characteristics of the psychoses that may occur in patients intoxicated with synthetic cannabinoids. We also identified a number of signs that may indicate the presence of substance-induced psychoses.

VINNIKOVA: Professor, Psychiatry and Addiction Department, I.M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation (Sechenov University), and Principal Researcher, Moscow Research and Practical Centre on Addictions, Moscow, Russia

SKRYABIN: Chair of Department, Moscow Research and Practical Centre on Addictions

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Please send correspondence to: Valentin Y. Skryabin, MD, Moscow Research and Practical Centre on Addictions of the Moscow Department of Healthcare, 37/1 Lyublinskaya Street, Moscow 109390, Russia (e-mail:

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