DOI: 10.3390/ph17010061 ISSN: 1424-8247

Antipsychotics and Mortality in Adult and Geriatric Patients with Schizophrenia

Ling-Ling Yeh, Wei-Chen Lee, Kuei-Hong Kuo, Yi-Ju Pan
  • Drug Discovery
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Molecular Medicine

Patients with schizophrenia have a high mortality risk, and the role of antipsychotic medications remains inconclusive. In an aging society, older patients with schizophrenia warrant increased attention. This study investigated the association of antipsychotic medication dosages with mortality in patients with schizophrenia by using data from Taiwan’s National Health Insurance Research Database from 2010 to 2014. This study included 102,964 patients with schizophrenia and a subgroup of 6433 older patients in addition to an age- and sex-matched control group. The findings revealed that among patients with schizophrenia, the no antipsychotic exposure group had the highest mortality risk (3.61- and 3.37-fold higher risk for overall and cardiovascular mortality, respectively) in the age- and sex-adjusted model, followed by the high, low, and moderate exposure groups. A similar pattern was observed in the older patients with schizophrenia. High exposure to antipsychotics was associated with the highest risks of overall and cardiovascular mortality (3.01- and 2.95-fold higher risk, respectively). In conclusion, the use of antipsychotics can be beneficial for patients with schizophrenia with recommended exposure levels being low to moderate. In older patients, high antipsychotic exposure was associated with the highest mortality risk, indicating that clinicians should be cautious when administering antipsychotic medications to such patients.

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