Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

More Long-Term Atypical Antipsychotic Studies Are Needed. (Olanzapine, Ziprasidone, Aripiprazole)

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

More Long-Term Atypical Antipsychotic Studies Are Needed. (Olanzapine, Ziprasidone, Aripiprazole)

Article excerpt

CHICAGO -- The only way to measure the long-term efficacy of second-generation atypical antipsychotic medications is through long-term studies, few of which have been conducted at this point, Nina R. Schooler, Ph.D., said at the American Psychiatric Association's Institute on Psychiatric Services.

Those long-term studies that are available--those that last 6 months or longer--show great promise in allowing psychiatrists more options for treating schizophrenic patients, Dr. Schooler, director of psychiatry research at the Zucker Hillside Hospital, Glen Oaks, N.Y., said at a lunch symposium sponsored by Pfizer Inc.

Dr. Schooler examined trials of new antipsychotics olanzapine (Zyprexa), ziprasidone (Geodon), and aripiprazole (Abilitat) versus placebo, versus old antipsychotics, and against each other.

"All of these have excellent short-term efficacy. But we wanted to look at long term," she said.

In a 12-month study of ziprasidone versus placebo, 67-72 patients randomized for three doses (40 mg, 80 mg, and 160 mg) had nearly identical rates of relapse at 1 year--about 30%--while 70% of patients on placebo had relapsed at 1 year (Int. J. Clin. Psychopharmacol. 17[5]:207-15, 2002).

Dr. Schooler also cited a 2-year study in which patients taking risperidone (Risperdal) had a mean time to relapse of 452 days, compared with 391 days for patients on haloperidol (Haldol). In that study, 177 patients received a mean of 4.9 mg/day of risperidone and 188 received a mean of 11. …

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