Pharmacotherapy for treatment-resistant schizophrenia
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Schizophrenia is a disabling mental illness with a lifetime prevalence of 0.7% worldwide and significant, often devastating, consequences on social and occupational functioning. A range of antipsychotic medications are available; however, suboptimal therapeutic response in terms of psychotic symptoms is common and affects up to one-third of people with schizophrenia. Negative symptoms are generally less amenable to treatment. Because of the consequences of inadequate symptom control, effective treatment strategies are required for people with treatment-resistant schizophrenia. Clozapine has been shown to be more effective than other antipsychotics in treatment-resistant populations in several studies; however, the occurrence of adverse effects, some of which are potentially life-threatening, are important limitations. In addition to those who are intolerant to clozapine, only 30% to 50% experience clinically significant symptom improvement. This review describes the recent evidence for treatment strategies for people not responding to nonclozapine antipsychotic agents and people not responding or only partially responding to clozapine.
Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment
© 2011 Mcilwain et al, publisher and licencee Dove Medical Press Ltd. This is an Open Access article which permits unrestricted noncommercial use, provided the original work is properly cited. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.
Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics