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Schizophrenia Blog

Related terms: Catatonic Schizophrenia, Disorganized Schizophrenia, Paranoid Schizophrenia, Residual Schizophrenia, Schizophrenia, catatonic, Schizophrenia, disorganized, Schizophrenia, paranoid, Schizophrenia, residual, Schizophrenia, undifferentiated, Undifferentiated Schizophrenia

FDA Medwatch Alert: Ziprasidone (Marketed as Geodon and Generics): Drug Safety Communication - Rare But Potentially Fatal Skin Reactions

Posted 6 days ago by Drugs.com

ISSUE:  FDA is warning that the antipsychotic drug ziprasidone (marketed under the brand name, Geodon, and its generics) is associated with a rare but serious skin reaction that can progress to affect other parts of the body. A new warning has been added to the Geodon drug label to describe the serious condition known as Drug Reaction with Eosinophilia and Systemic Symptoms (DRESS). See the FDA Drug Safety Communication for a Data Summary and additional information. DRESS may start as a rash that can spread to all parts of the body. It can include fever, swollen lymph nodes, and inflammation of organs such as the liver, kidney, lungs, heart, or pancreas. DRESS also causes a higher-than-normal number of a particular type of white blood cell called eosinophils in the blood. DRESS can lead to death. BACKGROUND: Ziprasidone is an atypical antipsychotic drug used to treat schizophrenia and ... Read more

Related support groups: Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia, Geodon, Ziprasidone

FDA Approves Labeling Update Of Abilify Maintena for Acutely Relapsed Adults With Schizophrenia

Posted 7 days ago by Drugs.com

Tokyo, Japan and Valby, Denmark – December 6, 2014 – Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (Otsuka) and H. Lundbeck A/S (Lundbeck) announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the labeling update of Abilify Maintena (aripiprazole) for extended-release injectable suspension. The approval was based on results from a controlled clinical study of acutely relapsed adults with schizophrenia. Efficacy was demonstrated in a 12-week randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, which showed treatment with Abilify Maintena (with concomitant oral aripiprazole for the first two weeks) significantly improved symptoms with an acceptable safety and tolerability profile in adult patients experiencing an acute relapse of schizophrenia.1 These data were published in the November print edition of The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. 2 Abilify Maintena, an atypical antipsychotic, was ... Read more

Related support groups: Abilify, Schizophrenia, Aripiprazole, Abilify Maintena

Study Finds Need for Improved Schizophrenia Care

Posted 9 days ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 4, 2014 – Improper drug treatment is given to nearly 40 percent of people who suffer their first episode of schizophrenia, according to a new study. Because schizophrenia is typically a chronic illness, early treatment can have an effect on a patient's long-term outcome, the researchers noted. Inappropriate drug treatment can lead to problems that cause patients to stop taking their medication. The study included 404 people who suffered a first episode of schizophrenia. They were seen at community treatment centers in 21 states. Of those patients, 159 received drug treatment that was inconsistent with recommendations for first-episode patients. Some of the more common mistakes the researchers cited included: Prescribing more than one antipsychotic drug. A higher-than-recommended dose of an antipsychotic. The use of psychotropic medication other than an antipsychotic. ... Read more

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FDA Approves Dual-Chamber Syringe for Abilify Maintena (aripiprazole) for Schizophrenia

Posted 1 Oct 2014 by Drugs.com

Princeton, N.J. and Deerfield, Ill. – September 29, 2014 – Otsuka Pharmaceutical Development & Commercialization, Inc. (Otsuka) and Lundbeck announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a new formulation of Abilify Maintena (aripiprazole) for extended-release injectable suspension – a pre-filled dual-chamber syringe. Abilify Maintena is an atypical antipsychotic indicated for the treatment of schizophrenia; efficacy was demonstrated in a placebo-controlled, randomized-withdrawal maintenance trial in patients with schizophrenia and additional support for efficacy was derived from oral aripiprazole trials. The companies expect the dual-chamber syringe will be available in the U.S. in January 2015. “Since March 2013, Abilify Maintena has been an important treatment option for people living with schizophrenia. Otsuka and Lundbeck continue to be committed to ... Read more

Related support groups: Abilify, Schizophrenia, Aripiprazole, Abilify Maintena

Stem Cell Research Offers Clues About Schizophrenia

Posted 12 Sep 2014 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Sept. 12, 2014 – New research involving stem cells may provide clues about the chemical basis for schizophrenia, scientists report. Brain cells of people with this chronic and disabling brain disorder give off higher amounts of three neurotransmitters linked to a range of psychiatric disorders, researchers found. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that trigger or block the transmission of electrical signals in the brain. Although the cause of schizophrenia remains unknown and there is no cure, the study authors suggested their findings shed new light on the chemical basis of the disorder. Ultimately, they believe the study results could help scientists treat patients with schizophrenia more effectively. "The study provides new insights into neurotransmitter mechanisms in schizophrenia that can lead to new drug targets and [treatments]," study senior author Vivian Hook, a professor ... Read more

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People With OCD May Have Higher Odds for Schizophrenia: Study

Posted 3 Sep 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 3, 2014 – People with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) may be at higher risk for schizophrenia, a new study suggests. Still, the findings shouldn't cause undue worry in people with OCD, one expert said. "In the general population, about 1 percent of people are diagnosed with schizophrenia – a proportion that jumps to 2 percent among those who already have a diagnosis of OCD," explained Dr. Alan Manevitz, who was not involved in the study but reviewed its findings. "But even with this doubled risk, it would be alarmist to suggest that a person with OCD has a high chance of developing schizophrenia," said Manevitz, a clinical psychiatrist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. "In fact, that risk remains small." While OCD and schizophrenia are two distinct mental disorders, prior research has suggested a link between the two conditions. In the new study, Danish ... Read more

Related support groups: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Schizophrenia

Many With Schizophrenia Say They're Happy: Study

Posted 20 Aug 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 19, 2014 – Even though schizophrenia is one of the most severe forms of mental illness, nearly 40 percent of people with the disorder say they're happy, new research contends. Researchers at the University of California, San Diego, surveyed 72 schizophrenia patients, ranging in age from 23 to 70, living in the San Diego area, and found that 37 percent said they were happy all or most of the time. Their happiness wasn't related to the length or severity of their mental illness, to their mental or physical status, or to factors such as age and education. Instead, their happiness was associated with positive mental and social characteristics such as optimism, resilience and lower stress levels, the researchers said. The findings are valuable because these positive traits can be taught to many people, said the authors of the study, which was published online Aug. 18 in the ... 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, Zyprexa, Risperdal, Risperidone, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Zyprexa Zydis, Risperdal Consta, Risperdal M-Tab, Zyprexa Intramuscular, Zyprexa Relprevv

Gene Discoveries Could Shed New Light on Schizophrenia

Posted 22 Jul 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 22, 2014 – One of the largest studies ever conducted into the genetic origins of a psychiatric disorder has uncovered 83 new sites on chromosomes that harbor inherited genes tied to schizophrenia. The findings, made by an international team of researchers, now bring the total number of common gene variants linked to the disorder to 108. Although these schizophrenia-associated genes aren't specific enough to be used as a test to predict who will or will not develop the illness, researchers say they might someday be used as a screening tool for high-risk people who may benefit from preventative treatments. Right now, the total group of schizophrenia-linked genes "only explains only about 3.5 percent of the risk for schizophrenia," Dr. Thomas Insel, director of the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health, said in an agency news release. However, "even based on these early ... Read more

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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, Zyprexa, Risperdal, Geodon, Risperidone, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Latuda, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Invega, Clozapine, Clozaril, Aripiprazole, Fanapt, Ziprasidone, Zyprexa Zydis, Invega Sustenna

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, Zyprexa, Risperdal, Geodon, Risperidone, Saphris, Seroquel XR, Latuda, Quetiapine, Olanzapine, Invega, Clozapine, Clozaril, Aripiprazole, Fanapt, Ziprasidone, Zyprexa Zydis, Invega Sustenna

Premature Death, Suicides Up Among People With Schizophrenia, Study Says

Posted 4 Jun 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 4, 2014 – People with schizophrenia are facing higher risks of dying prematurely, killing themselves and committing violent crimes compared to the general population, a new Swedish study finds. Researchers looked at nearly 25,000 adults in Sweden diagnosed with schizophrenia or related disorders over almost four decades. They found that within five years of diagnosis, one in 50 committed suicide; around 1 in 10 men was convicted of a violent offense, and overall, the odds of dying prematurely were eight times higher than for people without the mental illness. "In recent years, there has been a lot of focus on primary prevention of schizophrenia – preventing people from getting ill. While primary prevention is clearly essential and may be some decades away, our study highlights the crucial importance of secondary prevention – treating and managing the risks of adverse ... Read more

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Schizophrenia May Raise Dementia Risk in Older Adults

Posted 30 May 2014 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, May 30, 2014 – Older adults who have schizophrenia appear to face a higher risk of getting dementia, new research suggests. "The rates of dementia in those with schizophrenia in the study were twice that of non-schizophrenic patients," said lead researcher Hugh Hendrie, a Regenstrief Institute investigator and a scientist at the Indiana University Center for Aging Research. On the other hand, while those with schizophrenia were also more likely to develop other health problems, they were less likely to get cancer. The study is published in the May issue of the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. As the diagnosis and treatment of schizophrenia have improved, those with the mental illness are living longer, researchers noted. But there has been little information about how they fare with other conditions, such as heart problems and dementia, as they age. So Hendrie's team, ... Read more

Related support groups: Schizophrenia, Dementia

Newly Discovered Gene May Shed Light on Certain Brain Disorders

Posted 12 Feb 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 12, 2014 – Scientists who discovered a gene that links the thickness of the brain's gray matter to intelligence say their finding might help improve understanding of brain disorders such as autism and schizophrenia. The team looked at the cerebral cortex, which is the outside layer of the human brain. It plays an important role in areas such as memory, attention, thought, language and consciousness. Previous research has shown that the thickness of the cerebral cortex is closely linked with intelligence. Until now, no genes associated with the thickness of the cerebral cortex have been identified, the study authors said. The researchers at King's College London, in England, analyzed DNA samples and MRI brain scans from nearly 1,600 healthy 14-year-olds, who also underwent tests to determine their intelligence levels. The scientists examined more than 54,000 variations ... Read more

Related support groups: Schizophrenia, Autism

Schizophrenia Linked to Pregnancy Complications, Study Suggests

Posted 6 Feb 2014 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 6, 2014 – Women with schizophrenia are at increased risk for serious problems during pregnancy and childbirth, according to a new study. Canadian researchers analyzed data on births in the province of Ontario from 2002 to 2011 and found that preeclampsia, preterm birth and other serious pregnancy and delivery complications were twice as likely to occur in women with schizophrenia than in those without the mental health disorder. Women with schizophrenia were more likely to develop placental abruption (in which placenta separates from the uterus) and septic shock, to undergo induced labor and cesarean section, to be transferred to an intensive care unit, and to be readmitted to the hospital after discharge. "Traditionally, women with schizophrenia have had low fertility rates, and little attention was paid to their reproductive health," study author Dr. Simon Vigod, a ... Read more

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