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Antipsychotic Medications Cause Substantial Weight Gain in Children and Adolescents, According to Scientists at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research and Zucker Hillside Hospital
Date:10/27/2009

percent). Researchers followed these patients to understand if weight and metabolic changes are due to the new onset of a psychiatric illness or related hospital admission, or whether the observed changes are effects of the antipsychotic treatment.

The scientists found that the worsening of metabolic parameters differed between the antipsychotic medications groups, despite the shared, large and significant changes in body weight parameters, including waist circumference. Olanzapine, which was also associated with the largest effects on body weight, was associated with the greatest and most widespread worsening of lipid as well as glucose parameters. Quetiapine and risperidone were associated with varying degrees of lipid abnormalities only, which were more pronounced with quetiapine. By contrast, aripiprazole was not associated with any significant worsening in glucose or lipid parameters, which was also the case in the comparison subjects. "These findings provide further evidence for an additional, weight independent mechanism for glucose and lipid abnormalities with olanzapine that does not seem to be shared by the other antipsychotics that were studied," said Dr. Correll.

Antipsychotic medication use in young people has grown substantially in recent years and this study calls into question the effects of this upward trend. "Abnormal childhood weight and metabolic status adversely affect adult cardiovascular outcomes via continuation of these risk factors or independent or accelerated mechanisms," the scientists wrote. "Our results, together with data from first-episode studies, suggest that guidelines for antipsychotic medication exposure for vulnerable pediatric and adolescent patients naive to antipsychotic medication should consider more frequent (e.g., biannual) cardiometabolic monitoring after the first three months of treatment. Finally, in view of poor physical health outcomes and suboptimal metabolic monitor
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Antipsychotic Medications Cause Substantial Weight Gain in Children and Adolescents, According to Scientists at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research and Zucker Hillside Hospital 
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