Two new studies from the Clinical Antipsychotic Trials for Intervention Effectiveness (CATIE) provide more insights into comparing treatment options, and to what extent antipsychotic medications help people with schizophrenia learn social, interpersonal and community living skills. The new studies are published in the March 2007 issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry. CATIE, a $42.6 million, multi-site study, was funded by the National Institutes of Healths National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).
Comparing Newer Antipsychotic Medications After Older One Fails
Quetiapine, and to some extent olanzapine, may be more effective than risperidone among patients who were originally taking, but had to discontinue, perphenazinean older, first generation antipsychotic medication. However, patient responses varied considerably.
"CATIE continues to fine-tune our understanding of how our arsenal of antipsychotic medications work in real-world settings, but it also is revealing to us what questions we still must address," said NIMH Director Thomas R. Insel, M.D.
Of the 257 patients who were initially randomized to perphenazine in the CATIE study, 192 discontinued the medication for various reasons, including ineffectiveness and intolerable side effects. Among those who discontinued, 114 agreed to be re-randomized to one of three newer antipsychotic medicationsolanzapine, quetiapine or risperidone.
T. Scott Stroup, M.D., MPH, of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and colleagues compared the effectiveness of the medications by determining how long patients stayed on their assigned medication. Those taking quetiapine stayed on the longestaveraging about ten months before discontinuing. Those taking olanzapine discontinued after an average of about seven months, and those taking risperidone discontinued after an average of four months.