Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Data Reanalysis Suggests Optimal Dose for Atypical Antipsychotics

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Data Reanalysis Suggests Optimal Dose for Atypical Antipsychotics

Article excerpt

BERLIN - For atypical antipsychotic drugs, which are still relative newcomers to the psychotropic arsenal, questions of optimal dose remain unsettled, according to a reanalysis of two pivotal trials reported in a poster presentation at the Seventh World Congress of Biological Psychiatry.

For risperidone, the best range appears to be 4-6 mg/day-somewhat less than the 4-to 8-mg dosage range recommended earlier. The lower dose may be optimal for patients with less severe symptoms, the higher dose for those with more serious disease, said Dr. Stephen R. Marder of the University of California, Los Angeles.

Dr. Marder reported data from two randomized controlled trials of 1,875 schizophrenic patients receiving risperidone, haloperidol, or placebo. The North American trial involved 513 patients taking 2, 6, 10, or 16 mg of risperidone; in the European trial, 1,362 patients received 1, 4, 8, 12, or 16 mg/day

Patients in the North American trial were generally sicker than those in the European sample: They had been hospitalized nearly three times as long (48 vs. 16 weeks), had nearly twice as many prior hospitalizations (8 vs. …

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