Atypical antipsychotics in the treatment of schizophrenia: systematic overview and meta-regression analysis

BMJ : British Medical Journal
J GeddesP Bebbington


To develop an evidence base for recommendations on the use of atypical antipsychotics for patients with schizophrenia. Systematic overview and meta-regression analyses of randomised controlled trials, as a basis for formal development of guidelines. 12 649 patients in 52 randomised trials comparing atypical antipsychotics (amisulpride, clozapine, olanzapine, quetiapine, risperidone, and sertindole) with conventional antipsychotics (usually haloperidol or chlorpromazine) or alternative atypical antipsychotics. Overall symptom scores. Rate of drop out (as a proxy for tolerability) and of side effects, notably extrapyramidal side effects. For both symptom reduction and drop out, there was substantial heterogeneity between the results of trials, including those evaluating the same atypical antipsychotic and comparator drugs. Meta-regression suggested that dose of conventional antipsychotic explained the heterogeneity. When the dose was </=12 mg/day of haloperidol (or equivalent), atypical antipsychotics had no benefits in terms of efficacy or overall tolerability, but they still caused fewer extrapyramidal side effects. There is no clear evidence that atypical antipsychotics are more effective or are better tolerated than conventio...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Antipsychotic Effect
Atypical Antipsychotic [EPC]
Meta Analysis (Statistical Procedure)
Assay OF Haloperidol

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