Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Old Schizophrenia Drug Fights Violence as Effectively as Second-Generation Antipsychotics

The newer, atypical antipsychotics were no better than a first-generation agent in reducing violent behavior in schizophrenic patients, researchers here said.

Among 1,445 patients randomly assigned to one of five antipsychotic drugs, the overall proportion showing violent behavior declined from 19% at baseline to 14% after six months on an intent-to-treat basis, with no differences seen between different medications, reported Marvin Swartz, M.D., of Duke University, and colleagues in the July 1 issue of the British Journal of Psychiatry.

They conducted a new analysis of data from the initial randomization phase of the prospective, double-blind Clinical Antipsychotic Trials of Intervention Effectiveness (CATIE) project, a multi-center trial comparing the effectiveness of different drugs for schizophrenia.

"Contrary to high expectations and some previous research, this study did not show an advantage for second-generation antipsychotics in violence risk reduction when compared with perphenazine, a representative first-generation antipsychotic," the researchers wrote.


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