Navigation Links
Schizophrenia Drug Got Bad Rap
Date:7/13/2009

Less expensive clozapine might have saved thousands of lives, researchers say

MONDAY, July 13 (HealthDay News) -- Thousands of schizophrenia patients worldwide may have died because of safety restrictions on the use of the second-generation antipsychotic drug clozapine, a new study suggests.

Finnish researchers concluded that clozapine is associated with a lower death rate compared to other antipsychotics.

For this study, the researchers looked at the cause of death in about 67,000 schizophrenia patients in Finland between 1996 and 2006. They compared mortality rates associated with use of any psychotic drugs against no use of the drugs, and also compared mortality rates linked to the six most frequently used antipsychotic drugs with use of the first-generation antipsychotic perphenazine.

Although the use of second-generation antipsychotic drugs rose from 13 percent to 64 percent, the difference in life expectancy from age 20 between schizophrenia patients and the general population did not widen from 1996 (25 years) to 2006 (22.5 years).

Compared with current use of perphenazine, the highest risk for death was among patients taking quetiapine (41 percent higher) and the lowest was for clozapine (26 percent lower).

The study also found that long-term use (seven to 11 years) of antipsychotics in general is associated with about a 20 percent lower death rate than with no antipsychotic use.

The researchers said they were surprised that patients taking clozapine had the lowest death rate.

"Our results raise the issue of whether clozpaine should be used as a first-line treatment, because it seems to be the safest antipsychotic in terms of mortality and it is also the most effective," wrote Professor Jari Tiihonen, University of Kuopio and Niuvanniemi Hospital, and colleagues. "However, clozapine is inexpensive, and hence it is unprofitable for the pharmaceutical industry to market compared with other second-generation antipsychotic drugs. Additionally, monitoring schedules are a drawback that would be encountered with heightened use of clozapine, and physicians and other hospital staff might therefore be reluctant to initiate clozapine treatment."

The researchers suggest that restrictions on clozapine use were arbitrary. "Restrictions on use of clozapine and thioridazine have not been based on any evidence for their overall ratio of risk to benefit," Tiihonen wrote.

"Our results suggest that these instructions and recommendations [except for blood monitoring] might have caused thousands of premature deaths worldwide in patients who have been exposed to other antipsychotic drugs, which might be associated with increased mortality. In our opinion, such restrictions and recommendations should be based on solid scientific evidence for the safety of drugs. This example underscores the need for large nationwide databases to be used for surveillance of drug safety," they concluded.

The study appears online July 12 and in an upcoming print issue of The Lancet.

More information

Mental Health America has more about schizophrenia.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: The Lancet, news release, July 12, 2009


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. International Collaboration led by Dr. Pablo V. Gejman,Researcher At NorthShore University HealthSystem's Research Institute, Finds Genetic Association of Schizophrenia to Chromosome 6p Variant
2. Possible Gene Regions for Schizophrenia Located
3. Schizophrenia Linked to Higher Risk of Dying From Cancer
4. Alterations in brains white matter key to schizophrenia, UCLA study shows
5. Study finds cancer is the second most frequent cause of death in individuals with schizophrenia
6. Animal model for schizophrenia identifies a novel approach for treating cognitive impairments
7. Pregnancy and the flu: A link to schizophrenia
8. Schering-Plough Announces European Filing of SYCREST(R) (asenapine) for the Treatment of Schizophrenia and Bipolar I Disorder
9. Schizophrenia does not increase risk of violent crime
10. Singing brains offers epilepsy and schizophrenia clues
11. New Data Demonstrate RISPERDAL(R) CONSTA(R) (Risperidone) Long-Acting Treatment May Improve Health Outcomes and Reduce Hospitalizations in Patients with Schizophrenia
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Schizophrenia Drug Got Bad Rap
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field”: the story of a missionary couple ... From the Mountains to the Mission Field” is the creation of published author, Carole ... and currently teaches a class of ladies at her church, which she has taught ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... CitiDent and San Francisco ... using cutting-edge Oventus O2Vent technology. As many as 18 million Americans are estimated ... in breathing. Oral appliances can offer significant relief to about 75 percent of ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... Fla. (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... IsoComforter, ... therapy products, announced today the introduction of an innovative new design of the shoulder ... pad so you get maximum comfort while controlling your pain while using cold therapy. ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Information about ... intend to develop to enable prevention of a major side effect of chemotherapy ... especially in pediatric patients. For cisplatin, hearing loss is FDA listed on-label as ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... , ... Leading pediatric oncology experts at Children’s National Health System ... of the International Society of Paediatric Oncology (SIOP) Oct. 12-15. Chaired by ... Blood Disorders at Children’s National, and Stephen P. Hunger, M.D., Chief of the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/27/2017)... and NEW YORK , Sept. 27, 2017  DarioHealth ... and big data solutions, today announced that its MyDario product is expected ... local TV listings for when The Dr. Oz Show airs in your ... The nine-time Emmy ... ...
(Date:9/23/2017)... 2017 Janssen Biotech, Inc. (Janssen) announced today ... the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the ... the treatment of moderately to severely active rheumatoid arthritis ... are needed to further evaluate the safety of sirukumab ... "We are ...
(Date:9/19/2017)... HistoSonics, Inc., a venture-backed medical device company developing a non-invasive, robotically assisted, platform therapy that ... developments today:   ... ... Tom Tefft ... Veteran medical device executive Josh Stopek , PhD, who has led R&D and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: