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Davis BJ, Lysaker PH, Salyers MP, Minor KS. The insight paradox in schizophrenia: A meta-analysis of the relationship between clinical insight and quality of life. Schizophrenia Research. 2020 Aug 3.
Abstract: Poor clinical insight affects people with schizophrenia and has been cited as a chief cause of poor outcomes. As such, clinical insight is often a target of intervention; however, increases in insight have shown associations with decreased quality of life in a phenomenon known as the "insight paradox." Understanding the relationship between insight and quality of life is important as clients often feel hopeless when quality of life decreases. This meta-analysis sought to clarify relationships between clinical insight, its subdomains, and quality of life in schizophrenia. Further, we explored the role of two moderators (quality of life measurement type, symptom severity) on the insight-quality of life relationship. Studies were identified according to PRISMA guidelines through a focused literature search extending to March 1, 2019. Correlations between clinical insight, its subdomains, and quality of life were extracted and used to calculate overall mean weighted effect sizes using a random-effects model. In support of the insight paradox, overall clinical insight was inversely related to quality of life. Symptom severity moderated the relationship between clinical insight and quality of life, such that greater symptom severity weakened the inverse relationship between overall insight and quality of life. Regarding subdomains of clinical insight, awareness of illness was inversely associated with quality of life; however, other subdomains failed to reach significance. Our findings support the notion that increased insight is associated with lower quality of life and highlight the need for further exploration of the role of meaning-making processes on this relationship.