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Drug Helps Those With Tough-to-Treat Schizophrenia: Study

Posted 25 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 25, 2015 – The drug clozapine reduces symptoms in schizophrenia patients who don't benefit from other antipsychotic medications, a new study indicates. The finding, culled from an analysis of Medicaid data on more than 6,200 patients with treatment-resistant schizophrenia, was published recently in the American Journal of Psychiatry. "These results give clinicians important guidance for how to help an extremely vulnerable group of people," said study author Dr. T. Scott Stroup, a professor of psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City and a research psychiatrist at New York State Psychiatric Institute. "By helping individuals with treatment-resistant schizophrenia get effective treatment sooner, we can expect better outcomes," Stroup said in a Columbia news release. Antipsychotic drugs relieve symptoms in most people with schizophrenia, but up to ... Read more

Related support groups: Seroquel, Abilify, Schizophrenia, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Schizoaffective Disorder, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Psychosis, Agitation, Olanzapine, Invega, Psychiatric Disorders, Clozapine, Aripiprazole, Clozaril

Beware Safety Risks Posed by 'Off-Label' Drug Use

Posted 2 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Nov. 2, 2015 – "Off-label" drug use puts patients at risk for serious side effects, especially when scientific evidence is lacking, a new study finds. Physicians prescribe "off-label" when they recommend drugs for uses that have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It's a common and legal practice. It's also hard to track, because U.S. doctors aren't required to document the reason for prescribing a treatment. But in what may be the most extensive review of the practice to date, a Canadian-U.S. research team found reason for concern. Patients prescribed off-label drugs without strong scientific evidence were 54 percent more likely to experience an adverse event, such as a drug reaction, drug interaction or allergic response, forcing them to stop taking the drugs, the study found. "We are not saying that off-label is bad," said Dr. Tewodros Eguale, who led ... Read more

Related support groups: Migraine, Seroquel, Amitriptyline, Migraine Prevention, Risperdal, Elavil, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Migraine Prophylaxis, Olanzapine, Quinine, Nocturnal Leg Cramps, Symbyax, Endep, Zyprexa Zydis, Risperdal Consta, Qualaquin, Limbitrol

Many Seniors Given Antipsychotic Meds, Despite Potential Problems

Posted 21 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 21, 2015 – Antipsychotic drug use in American seniors increases with age, a new study cautions. The researchers found that the percentage of people aged 80 to 84 who received a prescription for an antipsychotic drug was twice that of people aged 65 to 69. This increase is occurring despite the known risks of serious side effects such as stroke, kidney damage, and death, they added. "The results of the study suggest a need to focus on new ways to treat the underlying causes of agitation and confusion in the elderly," study author Dr. Mark Olfson, from the College of Physicians and Surgeons and Columbia University in New York City, said in a news release from the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). "The public health community needs to give greater attention to targeted environmental and behavioral treatments rather than medications," he added. The ... Read more

Related support groups: Seroquel, Abilify, Lithium, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Haldol, Invega, Clozapine, Haloperidol, Compazine, Prochlorperazine, Perphenazine, Aripiprazole

Brain Inflammation May Be Linked to Schizophrenia

Posted 16 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Oct. 15, 2015 – Researchers say they've found a link between brain inflammation and schizophrenia. British investigators used PET scans to assess immune cell activity in the brains of 56 people. Some had schizophrenia, some were at risk for the mental disorder, and others had no symptoms or risk of the disease. The results showed that immune cells are more active in the brains of people with schizophrenia and those at risk for the disease. "Our findings are particularly exciting because it was previously unknown whether these cells become active before or after onset of the disease," lead author Peter Bloomfield, of the Medical Research Council's Clinical Sciences Center at Imperial College London, said in a college news release. "Now we have shown this early involvement, mechanisms of the disease and new medications can hopefully be uncovered," he added. The findings could ... Read more

Related support groups: Seroquel, Abilify, Lithium, Schizophrenia, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Schizoaffective Disorder, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Quetiapine, Psychosis, Agitation, Olanzapine, Haldol, Agitated State, Invega

ERs Often 'Safety Net' Care for People With Schizophrenia: CDC

Posted 23 Sep 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 23, 2015 – A new report finds that, too often, under-medicated Americans suffering from schizophrenia end up seeking care in the nation's hospital emergency rooms. The report, issued Wednesday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, found that between 2009 and 2011, over 382,000 visits to ERs were recorded for people aged 18 to 64 with schizophrenia. Many of these cases involved people on Medicaid who were either homeless or living in places such as nursing homes or group homes, the researchers said. Emergency departments "may serve as a safety net for schizophrenic patients not otherwise receiving care," said Dr. Michael Albert and Linda McCaig, both of whom work at the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). Mental health expert Dr. Michael Birnbaum said the new findings were "not surprising." "Unfortunately many people with mental illness ... Read more

Related support groups: Seroquel, Abilify, Lithium, Schizophrenia, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Schizoaffective Disorder, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Psychosis, Olanzapine, Haldol, Invega, Clozapine, Haloperidol, Compazine

Drug May Calm Agitation in Alzheimer's Patients

Posted 22 Sep 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 22, 2015 – A drug that combines a cough suppressant with a heart medication might offer a safer option for calming the agitation that commonly affects people with Alzheimer's disease, an early clinical trial suggests. The study, of 220 Alzheimer's patients, found that the drug – called Nuedexta – generally eased agitation symptoms over 10 weeks. And it did not worsen patients' problems with memory, thinking and judgment, researchers reported in the Sept. 22/29 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. As Alzheimer's disease progresses, people often go through periods of agitation that can range from restlessness and pacing to aggressive behavior like yelling, fighting and destroying objects. If those issues can be managed without medication, that's always best, said Dr. Sam Gandy, a professor of neurology and psychiatry at Mount Sinai Hospital, in New ... Read more

Related support groups: Bipolar Disorder, Seroquel, Abilify, Schizophrenia, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Schizoaffective Disorder, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Alzheimer's Disease, Agitation, Olanzapine, Agitated State, Invega, Clozapine, Aripiprazole

Brain Scans May Take Guesswork Out of Schizophrenia Treatment

Posted 15 Sep 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 15, 2015 – A brain scan might someday help psychiatrists quickly determine which antipsychotic drugs work best for patients with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, researchers say. This personalized approach could eliminate a lot of trial-and-error and hasten critical time to treatment, the study authors suggested. "The ultimate goal is to develop a strategy in which a simple brain scan could provide the necessary information to help select the best medication – or treatment approach – for an individual patient," said study co-author Dr. Anil Malhotra, director of psychiatry research at the Zucker Hillside Hospital in New York City. The test is still in the preliminary stages of research, and scientists want to improve its sensitivity before pushing to make it publicly available. Psychotic illnesses such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder affect about 3 percent of ... Read more

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Are Too Many Young Americans Getting Antipsychotics for ADHD?

Posted 1 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 1, 2015 – A growing number of teens and young adults are being prescribed powerful antipsychotics, even though the medications aren't approved to treat two disorders – ADHD and depression – they are commonly used for, a new study shows. Researchers found that antipsychotic use rose among children aged 13 and older – from 1.1 percent in 2006 to nearly 1.2 percent in 2010. And among young adults – people aged 19 to 24 – antipsychotic use increased from 0.69 percent in 2006 to 0.84 percent in 2010. Of concern to some experts are the conditions for which many of these antipsychotic prescriptions are being written, namely attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and depression. Currently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approves this class of drugs for psychiatric conditions such as psychosis, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia or impulsive aggression tied to ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Seroquel, Abilify, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Lithium, Major Depressive Disorder, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Haldol, Invega, Dysthymia, Clozapine

First Generic Abilify Approved

Posted 29 Apr 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2015 – The first generic versions of the atypical antipsychotic drug Abilify (aripiprazole) have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. License to produce the drug in multiple strengths was approved for Alembic Pharmaceuticals, Hetero Labs, Teva Pharmaceuticals, and Torrent Pharmaceuticals, the agency said in a news release. Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression or manic-depressive illness, is a brain disorder that causes unusual moods and activities, affecting the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks. Symptoms typically include alternating periods of depression (lows) and increased activity and restlessness (highs). Schizophrenia, another brain disorder, affects about 1 percent of Americans. Symptoms typically begin in people younger than 30, and include hearing voices, believing other people ... Read more

Related support groups: Bipolar Disorder, Seroquel, Abilify, Schizophrenia, Mania, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Schizoaffective Disorder, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Invega, Clozapine, Aripiprazole, Clozaril, Fanapt

Medication Errors Occur Every 8 Minutes in U.S. Children

Posted 20 Oct 2014 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 20, 2014 – A child receives the wrong medication or the wrong dosage every eight minutes in the United States, according to a recent study. Nearly 700,000 children under 6 years old experienced an out-of-hospital medication error between 2002 and 2012. Out of those episodes, one out of four children was under a year old. As the age of children decreased, the likelihood of an error increased, the study found. Though 94 percent of the mistakes didn't require medical treatment, the errors led to 25 deaths and about 1,900 critical care admissions, according to the study. "Even the most conscientious parents make errors," said lead author Dr. Huiyun Xiang, director of the Center for Pediatric Trauma Research at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. That conscientiousness may even lead to one of the most common errors: Just over a quarter of these mistakes involved a ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Klonopin, Seroquel, Clonazepam, Ativan, Valium, Abilify, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Azithromycin, Soma, Diazepam, Benadryl, Flexeril, Cyclobenzaprine, Zyrtec, Risperdal, Latuda, Baclofen, Zyprexa

Medications Plus Parent Training May Help Kids With Aggression, ADHD

Posted 11 Sep 2014 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 11, 2014 – Combining two medications with parent training appears to improve anger, irritability and violent tendencies in children whose attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is coupled with severe aggression, a new study suggests. "Augmented" therapy that consists of stimulant and antipsychotic drugs, along with parent training in behavioral management techniques, was rated more effective by parents than "basic" therapy pairing only the stimulant and parent training, researchers found. "An important finding of this study was that at the end of nine weeks, approximately half of all children receiving basic therapy were still rated by their parents as being impaired... with symptoms interfering with school or social functioning," said study author Kenneth Gadow, a professor of psychiatry at Stony Brook University in New York. "In the augmented group receiving ... Read more

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Certain Antipsychotic Meds Tied to Kidney Problems in Elderly

Posted 19 Aug 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 19, 2014 – Kidney injury can be added to the list of possible harms related to use of three antipsychotic medications often prescribed to treat behavioral symptoms of dementia in older adults, a new study finds. Quetiapine (Seroquel), risperidone (Risperdal) and olanzapine (Zyprexa) are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and other serious mental disorders. They are also frequently used "off-label" to treat behavioral concerns such as aggression or agitation in seniors with Alzheimer's and similar neurodegenerative diseases. "The side effect profile with antipsychotics is particularly concerning, so there is ample evidence to worry about their use in older adults unless they're absolutely necessary," said Dr. Anton Porsteinsson, director of Alzheimer's disease care, research and education at the University of ... Read more

Related support groups: Seroquel, Schizophrenia, Risperdal, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Zyprexa Zydis, Risperdal Consta, Risperdal M-Tab, Zyprexa Intramuscular, Zyprexa Relprevv

Antipsychotics Linked to Lower Brain Volume in Schizophrenia Patients

Posted 21 Jul 2014 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 18, 2014 – Antipsychotic drugs are associated with a slight decrease in both brain cells and connections between brain cells in schizophrenia patients, a new study indicates. However, this loss of what is called brain volume does not worsen schizophrenia symptoms or affect overall mental function, researchers reported in the study published online July 18 in the journal PLoS One. "It's important to stress that the loss of brain volume doesn't appear to have any effect on people over the nine-year follow-up we conducted, and patients should not stop their medication on the basis of this research," study author Dr. Graham Murray, of the Behavioral and Clinical Neuroscience Institute and the department of psychiatry at the University of Cambridge in England, said in a university news release. "A key question in future will be to examine whether there is any effect of this ... Read more

Related support groups: Seroquel, Abilify, Schizophrenia, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Invega, Clozapine, Aripiprazole, Clozaril, Fanapt, Invega Sustenna, Zyprexa Zydis, Ziprasidone

Taking Antipsychotic Drugs While Pregnant May Harm Newborns: Study

Posted 4 Jun 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 4, 2014 – Although antipsychotic medications have not been shown to cause birth defects, new research suggests these drugs can have other harmful effects on babies. Antipsychotic drugs are used to treat a range of mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia, depression and bipolar disorder. An Australian study found that babies born to women on these medications are more likely to spend time in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) or to need specialized care after birth. The researchers cautioned that health guidelines for the use of antipsychotic drugs during pregnancy should be clarified. "There's been little research on antipsychotic medication during pregnancy, and if it affects babies. The lack of data has made it very difficult for clinicians to say anything conclusively on how safe it is for babies," lead investigator, Jayashri Kulkarni, director of the Monash ... Read more

Related support groups: Seroquel, Abilify, Schizophrenia, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Invega, Clozapine, Aripiprazole, Clozaril, Fanapt, Invega Sustenna, Zyprexa Zydis, Ziprasidone

Antipsychotics Help Cut Crime Rate: Study

Posted 9 May 2014 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, May 9, 2014 – People with psychiatric disorders are less likely to commit violent crimes if they are taking antipsychotic or mood-stabilizing drugs, a new study suggests. Researchers analyzed data from more than 80,000 men and women in Sweden who were prescribed antipsychotic or mood-stabilizing drugs. Over three years, 6.5 percent of the men and 1.4 percent of the women were convicted of a violent crime. Compared to when they were not on medication, violent crime fell by 45 percent among those who took antipsychotics and by 24 percent among those who took mood stabilizers, according to the research, which was published online May 8 in The Lancet. The two types of medications are often used together, but there was no evidence that prescribing both medications at once led to any greater reduction in violent crime, the researchers said. They also noted that mood stabilizers were ... Read more

Related support groups: Seroquel, Abilify, Risperdal, Latuda, Zyprexa, Risperidone, Geodon, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Invega, Clozapine, Aripiprazole, Clozaril, Fanapt, Invega Sustenna, Zyprexa Zydis, Ziprasidone, Risperdal Consta

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