Wednesday, October 1, 2008

AHRQ Study: Conventional Antipsychotics May Pose Risk To Elderly

Elderly patients who are prescribed a conventional, or first-generation, antipsychotic medication are at an increased risk of death from cardiovascular or respiratory diseases, as compared to those who take an atypical, or second-generation, antipsychotic medication, according to a study funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

The new study, "Potential Causes of Higher Mortality in Elderly Users of Conventional and Atypical Antipsychotic Medications," which was recently posted online in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, adds to growing evidence that conventional antipsychotics may not be safer than atypical anitpsychotics for the elderly. Researchers had previously identified that such second-generation medications may pose increased mortality. The new study compares specific causes of death among elderly patients newly started on conventional versus atypical antipsychotics.


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