The goal of this study was to ascertain why patients are maintained on conventional antipsychotics and whether the risks/benefits and alternative treatments with novel antipsychotics are discussed with these patients. We reviewed the charts of 117 outpatients maintained on conventional antipsychotics at three New York hospitals: Hutchings Psychiatric Center (HPC), Syracuse Veterans Affairs Medical Center (SVA), and the Continuing Day Treatment Program (CDT). The major reasons for maintaining patients on conventional antipsychotics were good response (50%), patient choice (45%), and physician choice (36%). Despite the high incidence of tardive dyskinesia at all three hospitals (range: 12%-50%), physicians often did not discuss the risks/benefits of continuing conventional antipsychotics with the patients. The treating psychiatrist discussed alternative treatments with 37% of patients at SVA, 58% at HPC, and 68% at CDT (P = 0.066, df = 2, Pearson chi(2) test). For patients who are receiving any antipsychotic therapy, discussions about the risks/benefits of treatments are integral for optimal treatment and medicolegal purposes.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pharmacology (medical)