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      Effectiveness of Antipsychotic Drugs in Patients with Chronic Schizophrenia

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          Abstract

          The relative effectiveness of second-generation (atypical) antipsychotic drugs as compared with that of older agents has been incompletely addressed, though newer agents are currently used far more commonly. We compared a first-generation antipsychotic, perphenazine, with several newer drugs in a double-blind study. A total of 1493 patients with schizophrenia were recruited at 57 U.S. sites and randomly assigned to receive olanzapine (7.5 to 30 mg per day), perphenazine (8 to 32 mg per day), quetiapine (200 to 800 mg per day), or risperidone (1.5 to 6.0 mg per day) for up to 18 months. Ziprasidone (40 to 160 mg per day) was included after its approval by the Food and Drug Administration. The primary aim was to delineate differences in the overall effectiveness of these five treatments. Overall, 74 percent of patients discontinued the study medication before 18 months (1061 of the 1432 patients who received at least one dose): 64 percent of those assigned to olanzapine, 75 percent of those assigned to perphenazine, 82 percent of those assigned to quetiapine, 74 percent of those assigned to risperidone, and 79 percent of those assigned to ziprasidone. The time to the discontinuation of treatment for any cause was significantly longer in the olanzapine group than in the quetiapine (P<0.001) or risperidone (P=0.002) group, but not in the perphenazine (P=0.021) or ziprasidone (P=0.028) group. The times to discontinuation because of intolerable side effects were similar among the groups, but the rates differed (P=0.04); olanzapine was associated with more discontinuation for weight gain or metabolic effects, and perphenazine was associated with more discontinuation for extrapyramidal effects. The majority of patients in each group discontinued their assigned treatment owing to inefficacy or intolerable side effects or for other reasons. Olanzapine was the most effective in terms of the rates of discontinuation, and the efficacy of the conventional antipsychotic agent perphenazine appeared similar to that of quetiapine, risperidone, and ziprasidone. Olanzapine was associated with greater weight gain and increases in measures of glucose and lipid metabolism. Copyright 2005 Massachusetts Medical Society.

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          Most cited references 22

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          Treatments for schizophrenia: a critical review of pharmacology and mechanisms of action of antipsychotic drugs.

          The treatment of schizophrenia has evolved over the past half century primarily in the context of antipsychotic drug development. Although there has been significant progress resulting in the availability and use of numerous medications, these reflect three basic classes of medications (conventional (typical), atypical and dopamine partial agonist antipsychotics) all of which, despite working by varying mechanisms of actions, act principally on dopamine systems. Many of the second-generation (atypical and dopamine partial agonist) antipsychotics are believed to offer advantages over first-generation agents in the treatment for schizophrenia. However, the pharmacological properties that confer the different therapeutic effects of the new generation of antipsychotic drugs have remained elusive, and certain side effects can still impact patient health and quality of life. Moreover, the efficacy of antipsychotic drugs is limited prompting the clinical use of adjunctive pharmacy to augment the effects of treatment. In addition, the search for novel and nondopaminergic antipsychotic drugs has not been successful to date, though numerous development strategies continue to be pursued, guided by various pathophysiologic hypotheses. This article provides a brief review and critique of the current therapeutic armamentarium for treating schizophrenia and drug development strategies and theories of mechanisms of action of antipsychotics, and focuses on novel targets for therapeutic agents for future drug development.
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            A meta-analysis of the efficacy of second-generation antipsychotics.

             I Glick,  Nancy Chen,  S. Davis (2003)
            Consensus panel recommendations regarding choice of an antipsychotic agent for schizophrenia differ markedly, but most consider second-generation antipsychotics (SGAs) as a homogeneous group. It has been suggested that SGAs seem falsely more efficacious than first-generation antipsychotics (FGAs) as a result of reduced efficacy due to use of a high-dose comparator, haloperidol. We performed (1) a meta-analysis of randomized efficacy trials comparing SGAs and FGAs, (2) comparisons between SGAs, (3) a dose-response analysis of FGAs and SGAs, and (4) an analysis of the effect on efficacy of an overly high dose of an FGA comparator. Literature search of clinical trials between January 1953 and May 2002 of patients with schizophrenia from electronic databases, reference lists, posters, the Food and Drug Administration, and other unpublished data. We included 124 randomized controlled trials with efficacy data on 10 SGAs vs FGAs and 18 studies of comparisons between SGAs. Two of us independently extracted the sample sizes, means, and standard deviation of the efficacy data. Using the Hedges-Olkin algorithm, the effect sizes of clozapine, amisulpride, risperidone, and olanzapine were 0.49, 0.29, 0.25, and 0.21 greater than those of FGAs, with P values of 2 x 10-8, 3 x 10-7, 2 x 10-12, and 3 x 10-9, respectively. The remaining 6 SGAs were not significantly different from FGAs, although zotepine was marginally different. No efficacy difference was detected among amisulpride, risperidone, and olanzapine. We found no evidence that the haloperidol dose (or all FGA comparators converted to haloperidol-equivalent doses) affected these results when we examined its effect by drug or in a 2-way analysis of variance model in which SGA effectiveness is entered as a second factor. Some SGAs are more efficacious than FGAs, and, therefore, SGAs are not a homogeneous group.
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              Efficacy and extrapyramidal side-effects of the new antipsychotics olanzapine, quetiapine, risperidone, and sertindole compared to conventional antipsychotics and placebo. A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.

              The objective of this meta-analysis is to summarize the efficacy and tolerability of the new antipsychotics risperidone, olanzapine, sertindole and quetiapine in schizophrenia compared to placebo and conventional antipsychotics. The main results are: (1) All of the 4 new drugs are more effective than placebo, but the magnitude of the effect is only moderate [mean effect size, r, of all antipsychotics vs. placebo = 0.25, with a 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.22-0.28, n = 2477]. (2) According to the studies published to date, sertindole and quetiapine are as effective as haloperidol, and risperidone and olanzapine are slightly more effective than haloperidol in the treatment of global schizophrenic symptomatology. (3) With respect to negative symptoms, all new antipsychotics are more effective than placebo. However, contrary to widespread opinion, so is the 'conventional' antipsychotic haloperidol. Risperidone and olanzapine are slightly superior, sertindole is as effective and--according to the only study fully published to date--quetiapine is even slightly less effective than haloperidol in this regard. (4) All new antipsychotics are associated with less frequent use of antiparkinson medication than haloperidol, with risperidone appearing to have a slightly less favourable EPS-profile than the other new antipsychotics. The methodological limitations of this review, the generalizability of the results and expectations from future research are discussed.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                New England Journal of Medicine
                N Engl J Med
                Massachusetts Medical Society
                0028-4793
                1533-4406
                September 22 2005
                September 22 2005
                : 353
                : 12
                : 1209-1223
                Article
                10.1056/NEJMoa051688
                16172203
                © 2005
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